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In Getting Past No, William and Ury presents a five-step strategy for negotiating with an uncooperative, intransigent opponent. People may behave badly in negotiations out of anger or fear, because they don’t know any more effective way to behave, because they don’t see any benefit from negotiating, or because they see asserting their own power as the only alternative to being dominated. Intransigent behaviors are likely to provoke an angry response, and so the effective negotiator faces the additional challenge of controlling their own reactions. In the book, Ury describes the conditions that prevent people from getting to agreement, including their own reactions, their emotions, their position, their dissatisfaction and their power.
Author Ury identifies five barriers to such cooperation. (1) Your own emotional reaction to the adversary’s conduct. (2) The other side’s emotion, which might include anger, hostility, fear, distrust, or the feeling that they are right and you are wrong. (3) their desire to avoid losing face by accepting your proposals. (4) Their power and lack of interest in cooperating. The goal is to win them over, so that they become partners in a shared problem solving process. The Breakthrough Negotiation method canonizes and synthesizes some of the most important techniques and ideas in conflict management.
The overall message I received from “Getting Past No” is that negotiation is a process and ritual. To succeed one must:
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