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Negotiation fundamentals

5 steps to negotiation success

Topic: Business
Roy Weissman

Negotiation is part of life. We regularly bargain with other people to fulfill our needs, monetary or otherwise—something with which parents are no doubt familiar. In fact, the only way to avoid negotiation is to have no desire for anything held or controlled by someone else. Regardless of your profession, negotiation skills can be valuable to your success. However, many people feel that they are not effective negotiators.

Over three hours, Roy Weissman walks you through negotiation best practices and fundamental skills. You'll learn how to transition from bargaining to a more effective level of negotiation and gain hands-on experience with time-tested strategies that provide the maximum leverage to optimize negotiation outcomes. Join in to take the first step in becoming a master negotiator so that you can better contribute to your company, career, and personal growth by more effectively driving positive change in your world.

What you'll learn-and how you can apply it

By the end of this live online course, you’ll understand:

  • The most critical steps to building a foundation for successful negotiations
  • The importance of a strong negotiation strategy

And you’ll be able to:

  • Develop effective strategies for your negotiations
  • Increase productivity for your project teams by utilizing negotiation best practices
  • Improve the results of your negotiations

This training course is for you because...

  • You're a project manager, product manager, or developer who often works with internal and external parties and teams to move your projects forward.
  • You'd like to improve your negotiation skills to increase the productivity and effectiveness of your team.
  • You believe you can do better in your current negotiations and would like to learn new approaches to increase your success.


Recommended preparation:

Truth 1. Negotiation: A Natural Gift?” (chapter 1 in The Truth about Negotiations)

Truth 2. The Magic Bullet: Preparation” (chapter 2 in The Truth about Negotiations)

How to Seize Everyday Negotiation Opportunities (video)

Assignments to be completed prior to the training:

Create a list of two or three recent negotiations that you believe could have gone better or upcoming negotiations that you would like to result in optimal outcomes. List your concerns, problems, and issues you faced or expect to face in the negotiations. If you are comfortable sharing your information with the instructor prior to the class, please email your list and comments directly to them at roy@octopusonline.com, with "O’Reilly Negotiations Course Comments" in the subject line.

About your instructor

  • Roy Weissman is a strategic senior leader in business development and sustainable sales growth. Roy teaches courses on negotiation at Northeastern University and consults on business development, sales, and sales enablement for companies in the media and tech industries through his consulting business, Octopus, based in New York City. With more than 15 years of experience driving business expansion and new market penetration for both top-ranking digital media corporations and agile, leading-edge innovative startups, he has a demonstrated track record of realizing significant results in revenue, market, and channel growth by forging lucrative online partnerships and shaping core strategies for ecommerce, branding, and media outreach. As both an employee and entrepreneur, he has worked at companies such as Infoseek.com, Viacom, General Electric, Playboy, and Next New Networks (acquired by Google). In his career in the media and tech industries, Roy has initiated, negotiated, and closed hundreds of deals with companies including Amazon, Comcast, News Corp, AT&T, Verizon, and Time Warner. However, his toughest negotiation to date continues to be with his 2-year-old daughter, who somehow does not always respond to negotiation best practices.


The timeframes are only estimates and may vary according to how the class is progressing

Setting the stage for successful negotiations (40 minutes)

  • Lecture: Defining negotiation; communication—email versus phone versus in-person (does it matter?); the importance of strategy versus tactics in negotiations; what is fair in negotiations?; how to use the key elements of today’s presentation to manage project teams; can an individual out-negotiate a billion-dollar company?; the importance of confidence, tonality, and acting like you believe it
  • Group discussion: Watch and discuss the five-minute video Tone, Language Key to Successful Negotiations
  • Q&A

Five steps to mastering negotiations (25 minutes)

  • Lecture: The five steps—determining your (real) objective; determining the type of negotiation; identifying the ultimate negotiating tool (your best alternative to a negotiated agreement—BATNA); performing advanced planning and research; and identifying interests versus positions
  • Q&A

Break (10 minutes)

The importance of advanced research and planning (30 minutes)

  • Lecture: Finding the right person to negotiate with; what you need to know about them; why you need all this research
  • Hands-on exercise: Research the company and people you will be negotiating with
  • Q&A

Interests versus positions (30 minutes)

  • Lecture: The importance of asking questions; motives versus objectives, determining the other party's motives, interests, objectives, and ideal outcome; why each party should share this information; determining your ideal outcome; cultural differences—trust, transparency, and communication style
  • Hands-on exercise: Splitting the baby—Learn what's better than compromising

Break (10 minutes)

Applying negotiation best practices to team management (25 minutes)

  • Lecture: Negotiation best practices; issues of responsibility but no authority; working with team members with multiple project assignments; building commitment and loyalty for your project; engaging the other parties—why should they do your work first?
  • Hands-on exercise: Work together to solve some team management scenarios

Wrap-up and Q&A (10 minutes)