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Negotiation: What is it…or What it is.

Originally published July 21, 2017

This evening’s post is meant as a thought generator.

One of the things that makes us who we are is that we all see the world through our own lens, shaped and colored by the environment around us, how we developed as we grew, what we did, and many other variables. Even in the case of identical twins, each human being has their own set of experiences that, in turn, influence how they view themselves and the things around them.

As I started work on a new course in Negotiation, a random thought came to me when penning my opening snippet. The phrase I put on the top of my blank paper–that is how I think when in the initial design phase (yes, I am an analog guy in a digital world)–reads

“Negotiation is as much science as it is art; or is it as much art as it is science?”

As I read again this somewhat random, creative thought, it hit me that the statement really drills down to the core of the issue, doesn’t it. Negotiation is often the joining of two [or more] perspectives on a common issue or goal.

I am hoping that it will encourage some discussion right up front in the seminar course format because sharing those differing perspectives will enrich the learning and understanding process for everyone attending. Of course, when leading or facilitating a seminar format course, I also have the opportunity to learn from others, which makes me–and future sessions–better!

Of course, there are many types and forums for negotiation, but this has implications well beyond just negotiation–how we approach people, the first impressions upon which we make assumptions, priorities in life, and myriad other things in our daily lives and the plans we hope to enjoy in the future. Then again, if we were all the same, what a boring world this would be…

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