Lecture : Mastering Negotiation in an Economic Downturn
dpeguin | 13 septembre, 2009 06:34|
Professors Karen S. Walch and Paul C. Kinsinger
Thunderbird School of Global Management
Strategic negotiation skills and adaptation competences are tested more than ever when there is a decline in global economic activity. Currently, many global MBA candidates attend courses and multinational companies consult with Thunderbird about how to strengthen negotiation skills for all levels of management in an uncertain and flagging world economy. When it comes to transforming challenges into opportunities, there are two critical areas of expertise required:
- Knowledge concerning strategic leverage
- Social engagement practices in a cross-cultural context
Strategic leverage in an uncertain climate requires a robust understanding of global business intelligence (BI), often a less visible component of a successful negotiation strategy. Many experienced negotiators would recognize this as the “preparatory” phase of a negotiation when they undertake their “due diligence” to uncover the fundamental needs and goals of their counterparts (a process that often provides useful insight into one’s own goals as well).
Of course, very few negotiators would ever pursue negotiation without knowing something about the background and interests of the other players. However, in a rapidly changing and declining economic market, the impulse to bypass rigorous BI preparation is seductive. Although it is tempting, the pursuit of a negotiation planned on the ‘back of an envelope’ without a systematic challenge of key assumptions or ‘lore’ about what has worked in the past should be avoided. Quality information increases negotiation leverage.
Social engagement skills or emotional and social intelligence (ESI) are required in addition to strategic planning if negotiators ever wish to elevate their prospects of success in an increasingly diverse economic environment. A good plan is only as good as the ability to style switch, influence, and collaborate with others in a multicultural negotiation. Today’s complex markets have created progressively more demand for rigorous insight and cross-cultural social skills in order to creatively problem solve and create sustainable agreements. A successful organizational or individual negotiation plan can only be achieved when there is an integrated approach of analytical, psychological, and social insights and skills.
dpeguin | 13 septembre, 2009 06:02|
"You’ve developed the global project plan, polished the strategy, won approval from the sponsoring executive, and presented it with great fanfare to your worldwide team. As you wait for the accolades, the plan surprisingly draws mixed reviews from your stakeholders and team members around the world. Team Europe directly voices its discontent with the lack of local adaptability and elects to create its own game plan. Team Asia congratulates you on the new plan and quietly continues its own course for the project planning phase. What went wrong?"