Book Review: Negotiating in the Age of Integrity, by Wayne Berry

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This article is a review of a great book on negotiating

Negotiation is a form of communication. It requires certain skills, diplomacy, patience, concentration, awareness, even self-discipline, mixed in with a type of inspiration.

I do not necessarily agree with some of its tactics, but read this book. It is better to be pre-warned, and pre-armed, or in other words prepared, when somebody else uses some of them on you.

Negotiation: Childishness, or more a system of connective communication?

"To resolve problems through negotiation is a very childish approach."

The above quote is from the renowned Indian spiritual guru, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, (1917 to 2008).

The Maharishi was the creator of a system of mantra meditation known as, Transcendental Meditation.

Some of the techniques used in negotiating with others might often be seen as being cheap tricks, or manipulative manoeuvres/techniques that involve cheating, lying, and inflating, or exaggerating your own position.

How would love handle a negotiation?

Love lives in people as much as they live within it.

This means that when you employ these types of dirty tactics, love leaves you well enough alone, because it allows you to follow your mind's fear of losing just for as long as you want to.

When you finally wake up to the truth, you will return to love, and rather than negotiating deals with others to win something for yourself from them, you will simply give love to the situation, and so allow this love to do what it will with the situation.

In this way, you will not be forced away from your being of your real self by anything else, even by the fear of missing out on a good deal, or from your thinking that you will lose out on something in the situation, by your not negotiating for yourself a so-called better deal.

With this type of introduction to this book, what is this book really all about then?

Win/win might be the order of the day, but this win/win idea often presupposes that both sides want to win of course.

Nobody need ever be trying to win if we just allow love to provide us with all that we need, not that which we think that we might need, and that which we see in our own minds then to be a win.

We never need to win over anything in our heart, we just need to be one with it, or one with it all instead.

Better to be forewarned, than to be fooled out of a good deal

The real strength in this book to my mind is to reveal to you the types of tactics and techniques that good negotiators will use on you, whether they be politicians, sales-people, or tradesmen.

The author talks about different sources of power. We feel comfortable if we are in control, working fully from our own power. We feel uncomfortable, if we are being stifled in some way, or prevented from being the powerful person that we really are.

He talks about maintaining our attitude. Our attitude is important in our maintaining a "resourceful state" of mind is how he puts it. This is about remaining confident in the outcome of our negotiation.

He next mentions commitment. The most committed, the most persistent person will usually come out on top in any negotiation, he says.

Having the right strategy, seemingly carrying authority in what you say, stoking your mind up with all of the relevant facts beforehand, being information-rich in other words, not being time pressured, or appearing to be so, being able to come up with many alternatives or compromises that appear to be giving into the other person, but in fact still achieve the outcome that you are after.

Having a dynamic personality, or charisma, being an acknowledged expert, or in your field in the area being discussed. Even the environment in which the negotiation will take place, in your territory or his is important, and contributes to the amount of power that you can work from in a given situation.

All of these factors can either contribute to, or lessen the amount of personal power that you might be able to bring to the negotiation table.

The author lists twenty such sources of power in all.

Don't get carried away with appearing to be too powerful though.

Remember this sage advice (see below quote) from the "iron lady" of politics, the former Prime minister of England, Margaret Thatcher, (1925 to 2013).

"Power is like being a lady... if you have to tell people you are, you aren't."

Negotiating well is a type of skill

Negotiation requires a certain amount of awareness.

Some might say that it is about maintaining control of a situation, but it is more about controlling a situation in a special way. It is about leading people where it is best for them to go, or to be lead to, for all parties so concerned.

It is about communicating in such a way as to reach satisfaction on both sides. The negotiator does not show fear, because he or she is never fearful.

The author devotes a whole of his book to enlightening us on the ploys, dirty tricks, and various gambits, (his words) that others might use against us. He lists twenty-one of these all in all.

This chapter is probably the most valuable one in his book. The author assigns humorous names to each type of ploy.

One of these is, "the Flinch".

We should visibly flinch, or visibly react to any proposal made to us. Scowling, looking pained, screwing up your face, for example.

The author suggest that negotiating is a game. We are actors or participants in this game. We have to act accordingly, he claims

Another interesting tactic, he calls, "the Vice".

No matter how good the offer seems to be, never accept it. Squeeze them for just a little bit more! Act startled, as you say, "That's not good enough. You'll need to do better than that."

In summary then, I am recommending the reading of this book so that you can be better informed when someone tries to use some of these under-handed techniques on you.

I am not really advocating, or suggesting that you start using any of these ploys yourself. That's always up to you to make you own decision about that.

Remember this great advice as once given by another great statesman too.

"He who has great power should use it lightly."

That quote was from the great Roman philosopher, and statesman, Lucius Annaeus Seneca, (5 BC to 65 AD).

Photo credits: All photos used in this article, (except for the book cover photo, which belongs to this author) have been sourced from the free media site, Wikimedia Commons.


Book Review, Book Reviews, Communication, Communication Skills, Good Negotiating, Good Negotiator, Negotiating, Negotiation, Negotiation Skills, Negotiation Techniques, Negotiator

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author avatar spirited
I have been interested in the spiritual fields for over thirty five years now. My writing is mostly in this area.

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author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
22nd Jan 2015 (#)

I am not a good negotiator but I never want to score points and win against another; my view is for mutual benefit. I try not to outsmart another as that normally proves a Pyrrhic victory. Thanks for the review, Spirited - siva

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author avatar spirited
22nd Jan 2015 (#)

yes thanks siva, better not to outsmart just to be yourself.

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author avatar Fern Mc Costigan
27th Jan 2015 (#)

Interesting post!

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author avatar spirited
27th Jan 2015 (#)

thanks Fern

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