How to Negotiate with Difficult People

By Chris Voss | September 17, 2020

I’m on the wrong side of customs in Australia, and my bags are still inside. I’m not interested in getting stranded or missing my connection, and I’m also not keen on wearing the same clothes for five days and brushing my teeth with the hotel-provided toothbrush.

Here’s how I got out of this jam: I’m here to sign up for the Stupid American of the Year Award.

But first: How did I get into this predicament to begin with?

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Negotiation Skills Training: The Key to Disarming The Attack

By Brandon Voss | September 03, 2020

This blog was originally published on 7/23/2018 and updated on 9/3/2020.

When you go into a negotiation that is likely to be combative, there are strategies you can adopt to overcome those points of contention.

Most of these strategies involve ignoring your natural inclinations to right the wrongs, explain the why, and promise to make sure your counterpart won’t have to experience the irritation ever again.

Keep reading to learn five strategies you can use to disarm the attack.

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Negotiation Training: 3 Steps to Finding Out If You've Left Anything on the Table

By Chris Voss | August 27, 2020

This blog was originally published on 10/26/2015 and updated on 8/27/2020.

“How do I know whether I’ve gotten everything I could have out of a deal?”

This is one of the most common questions people ask me. To be fair, it’s a great question—and one that nags all of us.

What if I told you that you can make sure you haven’t left anything on the table by following a simple three-step process that requires very little energy on your end?

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Communication Skills: 3 Ways To Make “No” Work For You

By Chris Voss | July 23, 2020

This blog was originally published on 11/14/2016 and updated on 7/23/2020.

Does yes really always mean yes?

Absolutely not.

When we say yes, we’re committing to something. And immediately after we’ve committed, we begin worrying about what we’ve just signed up for.

Which means, at best, every yes is a conditional yes. And oftentimes, it’s even worse: a counterfeit yes that’s uttered simply to get the other side to shut up.

Would it be ridiculous to find out that getting the other side to say no is actually what you should be gunning for when you sit down at the table?

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How To Get Buy-In With The 3 Most Effective Communication Techniques

By Brandon Voss | July 16, 2020

This blog was originally published on 03/6/2017 and updated on 7/16/2020.

Negotiation is an information-gathering process. It’s not about getting your points across. It’s about using Tactical Empathy™ to uncover the information you need to understand exactly where your counterpart is coming from—and then making sure they know that you understand them.

The best negotiators never sit down at the table hoping to get the other side to understand them. Just like Stephen Covey, author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, suggests, “Seek to understand before being understood.” 

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How to Win Negotiations Over Zoom

By Chris Voss | May 18, 2020

As more people are working from home, virtual conferences, meetings, and even negotiations have become a necessity. However, Zoom and other videoconferencing platforms can feel unnatural or even uncomfortable. You’re faced with something that is neither a phone call nor an in-person meeting. 

Here are the three keys to winning a negotiation in a Zoom environment:

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How to Negotiate with Procurement

By Chris Voss | March 17, 2020

Procurement is an entity that tends to strike fear into the hearts of most salespeople and many executives. Interestingly enough, that’s who the negotiation system in Never Split the Difference was originally designed to prevail against. 

Here are some fine points on how to cope with procurement and help move them toward outcomes you desire.

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The Right Way to Use Leverage in a Negotiation

By Brandon Voss | March 02, 2020

There’s a fundamental mindset problem with trying to gain negotiation leverage: You’re trying to take advantage of the other side or the situation at hand to the detriment of your counterparts.

The reality is that the other side can feel it when you’re trying to leverage your position. It’s very apparent. No matter how slick you think you are, it’s no secret. The other side will always pick up on the fact that you’re trying to use leverage on them, and they won’t like it.

Do you really think people are going to be happy working with you knowing that you’re trying to take advantage of where they’re sitting?

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What’s Wrong (and What’s Right) with ‘Always Be Closing’

By Chris Voss | February 17, 2020

What’s wrong with “always be closing”? 

To start, it’s pushy. You can’t approach the situation with this mentality and develop a relationship. Always be closing is the same thing as “always be damaging” the relationship—which means you’re sacrificing tomorrow for today, and tomorrow is coming.

At the same time, always be closing has its upside, too. Here’s what’s right and wrong about it and how to integrate these ideas for success.

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How to Use Body Language as a Negotiation Tactic

By Chris Voss | January 27, 2020

Negotiation isn’t always about the words you say and the way you say them. Nonverbal cues often play a crucial role in how things go when you’re sitting at the table.

More specifically, body language is both an amplifier and an indicator. 

Here are the ways to maximize body language negotiation tactics—and get better outcomes because of it.

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