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Negotiating Outcomes: Expert Solutions to Everyday Challenges by Harvard Business School Press

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Cognitive Traps

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UNFORTUNATELY, EVEN THE most even-tempered and objective people fall prey to cognitive errors as they negotiate. This section describes some of those mental errors and explains how you can avoid and correct them.

Irrational escalation

Irrational escalation occurs when commitment or conflict intensifies or expands in ways that make little sense. Some negotiators make this error when they cannot stand the thought of losing. Others get caught up in “auction fever,” irrational behavior that surfaces when auctions and other bidding contests pit individuals against each other. To avoid irrational escalation, keep these tips in mind: ...

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