Blog: The Negotiation Edge

An FBI Hostage Negotiator Gives You 3 Rules For Negotiating With Credit Card Companies

I needed to call one of my credit card company’s customer service personnel to get a late charge (and interest penalties) waived. The charges were legitimate and completely due to an oversight on my part. Two days earlier I had paid the account balance in full.

As the FBI’s former lead international kidnapping negotiator, I teach a business negotiation course at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business in the M.B.A. program. I consistently apply hostage negotiation principles to my business and personal negotiations to gain an edge and to leave my counterparts feeling good about dealing with me.

Here are the rules:

2 Ways to Make Sure a “Yes” is a “Yes”

 

#1 – The Rule of 3

#2 – Follow-up with “What? & “How?” to insure it’s real.

If you are involved in business you will have most certainly experienced a situation where there was an effort made to come to an agreement with another party. Unfortunately, there is also a good chance that you have gotten a “yes” from one or more counterparts and later found out it was a “no”.

Time’s Up

Sheriff’s Deputies were attempting to serve an eviction notice on an individual who responded by firing four rifle rounds from a window. While he swore he was not aiming at them, that fact was lost on the deputies as they high-tailed it to safer ground.

The suspect called the police and said his life was terrible and that he wanted to speak with someone. A negotiator called his cell phone and he explained to the negotiator that he was just looking for help. Positive sign, right?