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February 4, 2009

omg, guys

by Katie

I am totally crushing out over the President.  Seriously.  He is my new negotiator crush.  Watch out William Ury.

Other people seem pretty jazzed about him too.  Like his political opponents:

“First of all, when you have a meeting like this, it humanizes and personalizes opponents, where you recognize them as human beings,” [Representative Trent] Franks said. “I think that does a lot towards helping people put aside politics and really try to do what is best for the country.”

“There is no question that I feel like I know him better than I did,” Mr. Franks said. “I give him great credit for his attitude and gracious hospitality.”

Lesson for the day: Do not underestimate the importance of building trust in a negotiation relationship.  Small things matter.

There are a bunch of studies on this stuff, but my favorite shows that negotiators who engage in small talk, non-deal related chatter, for as little as 5 minutes, have better relationships with their counterparts and are able to secure better deals.

So take a page from our president’s book: be nice.

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