The Only Negotiating Guide You'll Ever Need, Revised and Updated: 101 Ways to Win Every Time in Any Situation

The Only Negotiating Guide You'll Ever Need, Revised and Updated: 101 Ways to Win Every Time in Any Situation

by Peter B. Stark, Jane Flaherty


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Discover the critical elements you need for a successful negotiation and 101 tactics to use in any high stakes business deal, when asking your boss for a raise, or even when asking your significant other to take out the garbage.

In this book, you'll discover your negotiating behavioral style through self-assessment questionnaires, gain the tools needed to deal with negotiation sharks (or bullies), learn tips for recognizing and interpreting your negotiating counterpart's body language to create beneficial outcomes, and see examples on how to counter unethical and unprofessional tactics effectively—and much more.

Using their 30 years of experience as business professionals, lead negotiators, consumers, and parents, Peter Stark and Jane Flaherty provide you with the tools you need to become a successful negotiator who builds win-win relationships.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781524758905
Publisher: Crown Publishing Group
Publication date: 06/13/2017
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 467,477
Product dimensions: 5.30(w) x 7.60(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Peter B. Stark is president of Peter Barron Stark Companies, Inc. He travels internationally training procurement specialists, sales professionals and other leaders in the art of negotiation. He holds the prestigious designations of Accredited Speaker from Toastmasters International and Certified Speaking Professional from the National Speakers Association, and is the author of nine books.

Jane Flaherty is a senior consultant and trainer for Peter Barron Stark Companies, Inc. She has 25 years of experience designing and delivering training programs around the world. She has trained thousands of managers and employees in the areas of leadership, motivation, communication and negotiation, and has co-authored seven books on those subjects.

Read an Excerpt

Part I

The Skillful Negotiator

“Everybody sells something to somebody every day, whether it’s a product, a service, or just a case of making sure that they get their own way.”

—Chris Murray


What Is Negotiation?

“Let us never negotiate out of fear, but never fear to negotiate.”

—John F. Kennedy

In a research study of university students, the following question was posed to participants: How often do you negotiate—often, seldom, or never? More than 36 percent of the respondents answered “seldom” or “never.” Actually, this was a trick question, since the correct answer should have been “always.” Everything in life is negotiated, under all conditions, at all times. From asking your significant other to take out the garbage to merging onto the freeway in rush-hour traffic, from determining what time to schedule an appointment with a client to deciding which television program to watch with your family—every aspect of your life is spent in some form of negotiation.

Gerard I. Nierenberg was an American lawyer, author, and expert in negotiation and communication strategy. Forbes named Nierenberg “The Father of Negotiation Training” for his exploration of negotiation strategies and tactics as well as his decades of work disseminating the philosophy that “in a successful negotiation, everybody wins.” Nierenberg was the author of the first book on the formalized process of negotiation, The Art of Negotiating. He stated, “Whenever people exchange ideas with the intention of changing relationships, whenever they confer for agreement, then they are negotiating.”1

In short, most of us are involved in negotiations to one degree or another for a good part of any given day. Negotiation should be considered a positive way of structuring the communication process.

Typical Negotiated Transactions

Here is a list of some typical transactions in which you can improve your position by negotiating.

1. Price, terms, and accessory items on an automobile purchase

2. Price, terms, and length of escrow on a home purchase

3. Turnaround time and cost for car or home repairs

4. Which Netflix series your family will watch next

5. How much “free” data is included with your cell phone contract

6. Your salary, vacation time, and job “perks”

7. Scope of work projects and time frame for completion

8. Fees to charge a new client for professional services

9. How much time you allow your children to utilize their electronic devices

10. A date for an event

11. Which parties you will or will not attend during the holiday season

12. A work schedule that is flexible enough to meet your family’s needs

13. Merger and acquisition terms

14. What games or apps you will allow your children to download

15. Vacation schedules for employees

16. The time of year you will take your vacation (business) and where you will go (family)

17. What monthly price you’ll pay, what speed will be delivered, and how long your Internet provider will lock in the negotiated price

18. The shipping price and delivery date for a product

19. Convincing your significant other to upgrade your wide-screen TV from a 42-inch to a 108-inch to truly experience virtual reality

20. Discussing curfew with your teenager

Negotiation Situations

In what other areas in your life or daily routine could you improve your position by negotiating? List them here:






How Good a Negotiator Are You?

Like any skill, negotiation can be learned, practiced, and mastered. Personal and professional growth in any area of life usually involves a combination of awareness and risk-taking. We have developed the following assessment to help you determine how good a negotiator you are. The assessment measures the personal characteristics necessary to be a great negotiator. Your answers will help you determine where you have strengths as a negotiator and where you may need improvement.

You can complete the assessment in the book, or complete it online. When you complete the assessment online, we will email you a PDF copy of your results. To complete the assessment online, please go to

To complete the assessment in the book, circle the number that best reflects where you fall on the scale. The higher the number, the more the characteristic describes you. When you have finished, add up your numbers and put the total in the space provided.

1. I enjoy dealing with other people, and I am committed to building relationships and creating win-win outcomes.

1 2 3 4 5

2. I have good self-esteem and feel confident opening the negotiation at a high level of aspiration and expectation.

1 2 3 4 5

3. I work to create a comfortable, professional atmosphere.

1 2 3 4 5

4. I enjoy coming up with creative solutions to problems.

1 2 3 4 5

5. I am able to think clearly under pressure.

1 2 3 4 5

6. I am well prepared prior to entering a negotiation.

1 2 3 4 5

7. I am able to clearly identify my bottom line in every negotiation. (If I go below or above a certain point, I will walk out.)

1 2 3 4 5

8. I am willing to ask as many questions as it takes to get the information needed to make the best decision.

1 2 3 4 5

9. I communicate clearly and concisely.

1 2 3 4 5

10. I work to see each issue from my counterpart’s point of view.

1 2 3 4 5

11. I confront the issues, not the person.

1 2 3 4 5

12. I focus on shared interests, not differences.

1 2 3 4 5

13. I look for ways to “grow the pie”—rather than simply dividing up the existing pieces—thereby expanding the relationship with my counterpart.

1 2 3 4 5

14. I do not take my counterpart’s strategies, tactics, and comments personally.

1 2 3 4 5

15. I like to uncover the needs, wants, and motivations of counterparts so I can help them achieve their goals.

1 2 3 4 5

16. I recognize the power of strategies and tactics and use them frequently.

1 2 3 4 5

17. I know how to effectively counter a counterpart’s strategies and tactics.

1 2 3 4 5

18. When confronted with an aggressive negotiator, I know the tactics that will neutralize the effectiveness of a bully.

1 2 3 4 5

19. When a counterpart and I come to an agreement on an issue, I ensure that the issue is measurable and time-bound.

1 2 3 4 5

20. I am a great listener.

1 2 3 4 5

Grand Total: ______________


90+: You have the characteristics of a great negotiator. You recognize what negotiation requires, and you are willing to apply yourself accordingly. Read on to add new strategies and tactics to your repertoire that will enable you to be even more successful.

80–89: You have the potential to be a skillful negotiator. Reviewing the components of a successful negotiation and learning more about skills, strategies, and tactics will get you well on your way to being even more successful as a negotiator.

65–79: You have a basic understanding of successful negotiation skills. Studying the dynamics of building a relationship and learning the importance of understanding your counterpart’s needs will help you make great strides in your negotiations.

20–64: You have taken the all-important first step to becoming a great negotiator by expressing a willingness to learn. Enjoy reading this book. Take your time, and you will begin to understand the principles outlined. Applying these principles will provide you with the tools and skills you need to negotiate with anyone.


Negotiation’s Four Possible Outcomes

“The real winners in life are the people who look at every situation with an expectation that they can make it work or make it better.”

—Barbara Pletcher

A negotiation will end in one of four possible outcomes: lose-lose, win-lose, win-win, or no outcome (no consequences, negative or positive). In most situations, the ideal outcome is win-win.


Lose-lose outcomes result when neither party achieves his or her needs or wants. For example, a company requested that our consulting firm provide a proposal for conducting an employee opinion survey. After supplying an estimate, we thought we had the contract, but at the last minute, the client informed us that their company had chosen another consulting firm that had come in with a lower bid. At first it seemed the client had won and we had lost; the client had found a better price for what the company thought would be quality service, and we had lost the opportunity for some new business. Two months later, however, we received a call from the client informing us that our competitor had provided poor service and done an unacceptable job on the project. As a result, the client no longer trusted our competitor. In addition, since the competitor’s delays caused the client to miss the opportunity to present the survey results at its all-company meeting, the client also lost.

A second example of a common lose-lose negotiation is a labor strike in which management and labor unions cannot come to a satisfactory agreement. In June 2016, grocery workers across Southern California voted to authorize a strike against the supermarket chains Ralphs and Albertsons, which includes Vons, Pavilions, and Safeway stores. The vote by 47,000 members of United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) gave union officials the power to call a strike if the supermarkets didn’t concede to the union’s demands. In 2003–2004, the UFCW was engaged in a grinding, 141-day walkout, the longest major supermarket strike in US history. During the course of the long walkout, Ralphs and Albertsons lost $1.5 billion in sales, and veteran grocery workers absorbed a 35 percent cut to their pensions to end the strike in 2004. Before the strike, Ralphs, Albertsons, and Vons/Pavilions held almost 60 percent of Southern California’s grocery trade, according to the Strategic Resource Group. In 2016, those same stores control about 33 percent.1

Almost always in a labor strike, everyone loses. And, as frequently happens in lose-lose negotiations, neither counterpart, if given a choice, would choose to come back to the negotiating table with the same counterpart in the future.

Win-Lose or Lose-Win

The second possible outcome of a negotiation is win-lose or lose-win—when one counterpart wins and the other loses. If you have ever lost a negotiation, you know that the feeling is not pleasant, which leads to one party walking away without meeting his or her needs or wants, unwilling to negotiate with the winner in the future.

A participant in one of our seminars shared a story about how he had obtained a home mortgage loan from a nationwide bank. Almost immediately, the bank had prequalified the borrower, and the terms of the loan had been settled. About thirty-eight days into the loan process, however, the bank informed the borrower that the interest rate was going to change and, in addition, the loan was going to incur additional costs that had not been part of the initial discussion. The borrower’s gut feeling was that he should walk out the door and find another lender. But the escrow on the home sale was just forty-five days, and there was not enough time. If the borrower wanted the sale to close on time, he had no choice but to accept the new terms. In this case, the borrower felt he had received less than favorable terms—and lost the negotiation.

You might think that a win-lose outcome is just fine as long as you are the one who comes out the winner, but keep in mind that when you create a win-lose situation, the loser, if given the choice, will most likely refuse to negotiate with you again. (Sometimes, a loser who has no choice may have to negotiate with the same counterpart again, in which case he or she goes into the negotiation bracing for the worst.)

At a negotiation course at San Diego State University, one of our students continually created win-lose outcomes, with himself in the winner’s circle. By the final week of the course, not one person in the class would negotiate with him! Creating win-lose outcomes is simply not good business.

It is important to note that almost all win-lose relationships end up lose-lose over time. You can probably remember a time when someone provided you with an unsatisfactory product or service and refused to correct the problem. When you were unable to get your problem resolved, you probably decided you would never do business with that person or company again. In the first round of the negotiation, you lost. But every time you have the opportunity to buy the same product or service again and choose to take your business somewhere else, your counterpart loses. As you can see, as a counterpart in a negotiation, you would be wise to create a win-win outcome.


The ideal outcome for almost all negotiations is win-win. The needs and goals of both parties are met, so they both walk away with a positive feeling—and a willingness to negotiate with each other again. In the negotiation workshops we present, it is rewarding to see the excitement on participants’ faces when they realize they have created a win-win outcome.

On July 15, 2015, President Barack Obama accomplished something that every president in the fifty-four years before him had tried unsuccessfully to achieve. Obama and Raul Castro, the brother of the aging former president Fidel Castro, agreed to resume normalized relations between the United States and Cuba.

The United States embargo goes back to the Cold War. In the late 1950s, Fidel Castro led a communist revolution in Cuba, creating tension in the relationship between the United States and Cuba, and between their citizens.

For more than eighteen months, President Obama, along with his team of negotiators, worked secretly to restore normalized relations with Cuba. Some of the significant deal points included:

Prisoner Exchange

Cuba agreed to release Alan Gross, an American who had been jailed since December 2009 for setting up satellite communication networks without the permit required by Cuban law. Cuba also agreed to release CIA spy Rolando Trujillo and fifty political prisoners.

In exchange, the United States agreed to release the last three members of the “Cuban Five,” held in prison for sixteen years after they were caught infiltrating anti-Castro Cuban American groups.

Trade Relations

Obama agreed to loosen restrictions on travel and trade (yes, you can now take up to one hundred dollars’ worth of Cuban cigars back home to the States). The United States also agreed to authorize telecommunication companies to bring Internet services to Cuba.

Humanitarian Relations

Cuba agreed to engage with the International Red Cross and United States on human rights and prison conditions.

Diplomatic Relations

Table of Contents

Introduction: Why Another Book on Negotiation? xiii

Part I The Skillful Negotiator 1

1 What Is Negotiation? 3

2 Negotiation's Four Possible Outcomes 10

3 The Three Critical Elements: Time, information, and Power 21

4 Questioning Skills: Haw to Uncover Your Counterpart's Needs 32

5 Listening Skills: A Powerful Key to Successful Negotiating 46

6 Nonverbal Behavior: The Language of Negotiating 56

7 Building Trust in Negotiation 66

8 Sharks, Carp, and Dolphins: Your Negotiating Counterparts 74

9 The Role of Negotiating Styles 81

10 Preparing to Negotiate 96

11 Negotiating over Email, Text, or Phone 111

12 Asking for a Pay Raise 117

13 Negotiating at Garage Sales, Swap Meets, or Local Craft Fairs 125

Part II 101 Tactics for Successful Negotiation and 20 Bonus Tactics 129

Index of Tactics 257

Index of Bonus Tactics 269

Acknowledgments 273

Bibliography 275

Index 277

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