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Improvisational Negotiation: A Mediator's Stories of Conflict About Love, Money, Angerand the Strategies That Resolved Them [Kindle Edition]

Jeffrey Krivis
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Improvisational Negotiation presents an original approach for mediators, negotiators, and other dispute resolution professionals. Drawing on his own experience plus those of his colleagues, Jeffrey Krivis offers the reader dramatic, well-crafted, and highly instructive stories about people in conflict - families, organizations, corporations - and shows how mediated negotiations help them to reach a successful resolution.

Unlike most books on the topic, Improvisational Negotiation does not focus on theory, philosophy, or formulaic procedures. The book highlights entertaining true stories that illuminate the skills and tools a good mediator uses to direct a successful negotiation and then asks the questions: What happened? and What strategies can we learn?



Editorial Reviews

Review

"Every person interested in becoming a better negotiator or mediator must read this book. Krivis’s extensive experience as one of the most successful professional mediators in California makes him eminently qualified to offer instruction and guidance in the art of making deals. His format of case studies followed by insightful analysis makes this book so entertaining that the reader almost loses sight of all that he is learning. Reading this book will make you a better negotiator, mediator, problem solver, and person."
--Peter Robinson, acting director and associate professor, Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution, Pepperdine University School of Law 

"Krivis’s insightful stories illustrate not only the techniques of a masterful mediator but also the complexity of human conflict. Mediators seeking to expand their toolbox will find this book invaluable."
--David Hoffman, chair, American Bar Association Section on Dispute Resolution

"Must reading for anybody interested in finding creative ways to resolve complex disputes. A practical guide based on real-world experience to avoid the courtroom."
--Kenneth Feinberg, head, 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund

"These candid accounts of the unstructured world of mediation are thought-provoking, entertaining, alarming, compelling, instructive, and extremely helpful. The quirky characters, the startling facts, and the deeply human decision-making processes in these stories will resonate with every experienced mediator. By inviting readers to sit next to the mediator as these stories unfold, Jeff Krivis has done an enormous service to the field of dispute resolution."
--Michael Moffitt, associate professor and associate director, Appropriate Dispute Resolution Center, University of Oregon School of Law

"Jeff is a mediator who cares deeply about his craft, and every page of this book shows it. It deserves to be read by all professional mediators who aspire to his level of excellence, by lawyers who advise clients in the mediation process, and also by students of human nature. His stories are full of warmth and the characters skillfully drawn. The insights into negotiation theory are profound."
--Tony Willis, Brick Court Chambers, London, England

"The reason this book is so important is because it allows the reader to feel and sense what the mediation of conflict is really about. Beyond technique, at core, the success of a mediator is his or her authenticity--that’s not necessarily the same as honesty and goes beyond mere empathy--it is the ability to connect and develop an essential level of trust with the parties. That’s why Krivis has been so successful in his mediation practice and it’s what permeates through his words and stories. Every mediator, novice or advanced, practicing in any area of conflict management, would reap great benefit from reading this book."
--Robert Benjamin, senior mediator, Mediation and Conflict Management Services, Portland, Oregon

"All conflicts are an alchemy of strong emotions, deep hurts, great perils. Always, there is the prospect of finding something bigger and transformational around the corner if we can find our way through it. Krivis shows us the way. A skilled mediator and master communicator, he demonstrates the patient power of story as a strategy for overcoming anger, pain, and sadness. More important, he renews hope that all of us can do the same when we are dealing with our own problems or helping others with theirs."
--Peter S. Adler, president, The Keystone Center

"Improvisational Negotiation is a road map to mediation ingenuity. It inspires us all to be creative and persistent in seeking resolution."
--Richard Chernick, managing director, JAMS Arbitration Practice

"Improvisational Negotiation is a must-read for all mediators. Jeff Krivis, a world-class mediator, brings the reader into the conference room and provides amazing insights that are both practical and useful. This wonderful book is like attending a superior advanced mediation training in the comfort of your living room."
--Eric Galton, mediator and author, Lakeside Mediation Center, Austin, Texas

"Jeff Krivis has once again demonstrated why he is one of the premier mediators in the world by writing an easy-to-read yet sophisticated treatment of what actually happens in mediation. The post-story sections of ‘What Happened?’ and ‘What Strategies Can We Learn?’ are helpful for practitioners from the novice to the master levels. The conversational tone, rather than a research approach with footnotes and case authority, is refreshing yet is still an invaluable way of telling the mediator’s story!"
--Robert A. Creo, founding member and past president, International Academy of Mediators

"After decades of negotiating and mediating some of the toughest cases around, Jeff Krivis has written a book explaining how he gets the job done. Well-written and entertaining, this is a book every lawyer should read."
--Richard H. Friedman, trial lawyer and author of Rules of the Road, Proving Liability in Bad Faith and Other Complex Cases

"This is a valuable and accessible resource for anyone interested in knowing about commercial mediation. And it is fun to read."
--Arlen Gregorio, Gregorio, Haldeman & Piazza, Mediated Negotiations

"Without compromising the mystical interaction of human touch with high skill, Krivis delivers a treasure trove of methods to discover the ‘art of the deal.’"
--Tracy Allen, trainer and private mediator

"Jeff Krivis’s stories of masterful mediation are perfect for promoting the kind of moment-to-moment creativity that characterizes the great mediators--and the great jazz musicians. For mediators at any stage of their careers, Improvisational Negotiation is a treasure of illustration, illumination, and inspiration."
--Leonard L. Riskin, C. A. Leedy Professor of Law, University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law; director, Center for the Study of Dispute Resolution

From the Inside Flap

Everyone agrees that a good story can make a point simply, effectively, and memorably. In this groundbreaking book, pioneer attorney and mediator Jeffrey Krivis shows how fascinating and inspirational stories can illuminate the process of conflict resolution and teach us how to help people reach a successful settlement.

Improvisational Negotiation presents an original approach for mediators, negotiators, and other dispute resolution professionals. Drawing on his own experience plus those of his colleagues, Jeffrey Krivis offers the reader dramatic, well-crafted, and highly instructive stories about people in conflict—families, organizations, corporations—and shows how mediated negotiations help them to reach a successful resolution.

Unlike most books on the topic, Improvisational Negotiation does not focus on theory, philosophy, or formulaic procedures. The book highlights entertaining true stories that illuminate the skills and tools a good mediator uses to direct a successful negotiation and then asks the questions, What happened? and What strategies can we learn?

Krivis includes stories about personal and business disputes, as well as conflicts about money and strategy. Each story includes a brief discussion of what went right (and sometimes wrong) in the scenario and contains information on the specific techniques highlighted in the case.

Improvisational Negotiation also includes a special section on advanced mediation techniques such as how to get a stalled negotiation back in motion, recognize the key turning points in a case, and utilize dramatic opportunities for a breakthrough.


Product Details

  • File Size: 2783 KB
  • Print Length: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Jossey-Bass; 1 edition (July 23, 2007)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000PY4VV0
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #964,473 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Improv Comes Alive in Mediation January 31, 2006
Format:Hardcover
Jazz enthusiast and mediator extraordinaire, Author Jeff Krivis, brings to life, the realities of living in the moments of mediation. His stories are filled with the subtleties of human communications, human frailties and the power of man's ability to resolve impossible conflict. From the simple to the complex, the serious to the sublime, Jeff has captured many poignant mediation turning points and dissected them for the reader's education and skill building. Whether you are a highly experienced mediation professional, or just getting seated in the neutral's chair, Improvisational Negotiation is a humble and worthwhile read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very entertaining and resourceful read June 21, 2006
Format:Hardcover
Mr. Krivis has succeeded in creating a very entertaining and resourceful book that anyone in the conflict resolution arena would find a must read, including attorneys, mediators, claims adjusters, negotiators, human resource personnel, private parties in conflict, and the list could go on and on.

I enjoyed the book because it was written with such detail and specificity in a John Grisham type style, yet at the same time it was also very educational and applicable. The material was so good and entertaining that I found myself at the end of each chapter saying, "Okay, one more chapter then I'll go to bed." Then a half hour later, "Okay, really just one more chapter."

Mr. Krivis has shared in this book many valuable tools that I have already applied in my private practice as an attorney and mediator. I can testify that they have tremendously benefitted my clients and my practice. For this reason, I find myself referring to the book weekly and frequently recommending it to my colleagues. Thanks for the great read Mr. Krivis and subsequent enhancement to my practice. This book is a must read!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Improvisational Negotiation January 19, 2006
Format:Hardcover
I enjoyed reading this book. In addition to the Hip-Pocket Guide to Strategy, which is excellent, this author is a masterful storyteller. His tales are not simple, though. They record decisions people have made in difficult circumstances; Some involve relationship and communication breakdowns while others are mostly about money, still others involve negotiators whose decision making depends on finding creative solutions or on using information strategically. As the author recounts these cases from his own experiences and those of colleagues, he shows us how mediators lead negotiators toward resolution. Each of the thirty examples is followed by a discussion of the techniques and approach used by the mediator. Some criticisms are offered, with the benefit of hindsight of course. The presentation of each case, the analysis of the techniques used and the author's reflections on the experience enables the reader to see each of these mediations from the perspective of a master mediator. A book that does all this deserves to be highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Improvisational Negotiation February 15, 2006
Format:Hardcover
I have been a parenting consultant for twenty-five years, working with single parents, married couples and divorced couples. This book was inspiring to me. There were many instances where I never would have thought to ask the questions or use the strategies that the Mediator used but they were so on-target and helpful that I will definitely incorporate them into my practice now! The book is easy to read and the summaries at the end of the anecdotes ("What Strategies Can We Learn?") are a bonus. I ordered an extra copy of this book to lend to my clients.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Human Dynamic in Conflict Resolution February 27, 2006
Format:Hardcover
What do love, money, anger and conflict have in common? Among other things, pioneer Southern California mediator Jeff Krivis. Now this legendary "closer" has written an original and engaging new book "Improvisational Negotiation: A Mediator's Stories of Conflict About Love, Money, Anger and the Strategies That Resolved Them".

Focusing on the "human dynamic" involved in dispute resolution, Krivis' book reads more like a fast-paced novel than a work of non-fiction. In 30 riveting chapters, Krivis takes the reader behind the scenes and far beneath the surface of conflicts that everyday people face and his (and others) strategies for their resolution. Given the general public's overwhelming interest in the law and what lawyers do, this book should enjoy an appeal far beyond the sphere of dispute resolution professionals.

It deserves a wide audience.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Krivis: A Litigator's Mediator March 20, 2006
Format:Hardcover
I have been a full time mediator for seven years. Before that, I was a litigator. At times, I utilized Mr. Krivis' expertise as a mediator. I recall thinking: "This man's an alchemist. He settles all of my cases, but does so in a different way each time. He truly is an improvisational genius." Now, through his new book, Krivis gives me some insight into his practice. This book should be required reading for anyone currently mediating the litigated case. It should also be read by litigators. The analysis sections at the end of each chapter provides a wealth of information for sorting out differences of all kinds. Don't wait for the jury, ladies and gentlemen. The verdict is in: Krivis is a master mediator with an inpired approach to conflict management and resolution.
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Format:Hardcover
I often look at reviews for practical advice, i.e., if people like me read the book and get something out of it, then I want it. Well, as a trial lawyer and as someone who would benefit a lot from doing my best at mediation, Jeff Krivis' book is a DEFINITE READ. Mr. Krivis' style is clear and very easy to understand. After setting forth various fact patterns that an experienced lawyer might see, he shows how different approachs to meditation settle the case. This is a window into how to a top mediator thinks about your case and the strategies he uses to help both sides resolve their differences. What could be better?

In case I wasn't clear - BUY THIS BOOK.
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