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

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Frequently Asked Questions

When asked by the other side to name a dollar figure, is it OK to state my range?

Do not state your range unless you will be happy with a deal that is at the least favorable end of that range. For example, if you tell someone that you would pay $20,000 to $25,000 for a piece of property, rest assured that you will pay at least $25,000.

The only reason to mention a range is to discourage the other side from pushing you beyond it, and this should happen toward the end of the negotiating process. For example, if after several rounds of back-and-forth on a dollar figure, you are at $23,000 and the other side is at $30,000 and seems to be pushing for $28,000, you could say, “My preferred range walking into this negotiation ...

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