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Shaping the Game: The New Leader's Guide to Effective Negotiating Hardcover – July 1, 2006


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Shaping the Game: The New Leader's Guide to Effective Negotiating + Your Next Move: The Leader's Guide to Navigating Major Career Transitions + Right From The Start: Taking Charge In A New Leadership Role
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 196 pages
  • Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press; 1 edition (July 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1422102521
  • ISBN-13: 978-1422102527
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 6.4 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,054,978 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Having already addressed ways of making painless (and successful) upward professional transitions in his previous book, The First 90 Days, Watkins, a leadership consultant, hones in on what he calls the most valuable skill for the upwardly mobile: negotiation. Leaders, he says, should think of negotiation as a game of strategic interaction among intelligent players for which it pays to be prepared with a reasonable investment in research and analysis. The nuances are almost endless, and Watkins delves into them all, providing negotiation tips, frameworks, assessment tools and strategies. Helpful charts and checklists appear throughout the text, and his takes on the finer points of the many types of negotiations-one-time transactions, for instance, versus relationships in which future agreements loom-brim with insight. This logical, thought-provoking guide is a useful tool for leaders, new and old.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Michael D. Watkins is a Professor of Practice at INSEAD and founder of Genesis Advisers, a leadership and strategy consultancy.

More About the Author

Michael D. Watkins is the world's leading expert on accelerating leadership transitions. He is the author of the international bestseller The First 90 Days, which The Economist recognized as "The On-boarding bible."

Michael is a Co-founder of Genesis Advisers, a leadership development consultancy located in Massachusetts. Genesis Advisers (www.genesisadvisers.com) is the leading provider of on-boarding and transition acceleration services. Based on our the First 90 Days® research and our experience with Fortune 100 clients since 1999, our full array of consulting servicies, coaching processes, programs, virtual workshops, and self-guided materials help leaders at at every level of the leadership pipeline take charge more quickly and effectively.

Michael works closely with a gifted team at Genesis to assess client needs, and design and deliver the right transition solutions. He helps Genesis clients implement what we call Enterprise Transition Architectures™ - a common core framework and toolkit for accelerating transitions, cost-effectively delivered through First 90 Days coaching, programs, virtual workshops and self-guided materials to all levels.

In addition to his role at Genesis Advisers Michael gives speeches on leadership, organizational transformation, and transition acceleration to executive audiences, as well as designs and delivers senior executive team meetings, and coaches newly appointed senior executives and their teams during transitions.

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Customer Reviews

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He provides plenty of clear, visual models of the negotiation process.
Kent M. Blumberg
It also will help anyone who runs an organization where people negotiate on a regular basis.
Robert Aiello
The author wrote an interesting and insightful book on achieving effective negotiations.
Elijah Chingosho

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Robert Aiello on August 4, 2006
Format: Hardcover
For years "Getting to Yes" has been the standard introduction to negotiation. Frankly, the one-size-fits-all approach and win-win optimism of the book has gotten tired. Mike Watkin's "Shaping the Game" is the antidote.

Watkins's focus is the need to both create value and capture value. He argues that you have to shift your style accordingly to circumstances -- sometimes on creating value, sometimes on capturing it. Sometimes you focus on interests and sometimes on positions. Sometimes you negotiate a transaction and sometimes you negotiate a relationship. They key is to know when to do what.

After providing an introduction to diagnosing negotiations in terms of structure and process, Watkins outlines a framework for developing negotiating strategies based on identifying what you need to do (1) before you get to the negotiating table and (2) once you get there. He also highlights the importance of not just playing the negotiating games the way others have defined them, but also focusing on "shaping the game." He rightly stresses that much is won and lost in the setup of negotiations, before you even get to the table.

The rest of the book lays out key elements of his approach:

* Match Strategy to Situation - Figure out what type of negotiation you are involved in and prepare for it accordingly.

* Plan to Learn and Influence - Engage with the other side "at the table" in ways that both help you to learn about their positions and interests and that influence them.

* Shape the Game - Focus on influencing basic setup of negotiations, such as who you negotiate with and what the issues are and what alliances you build, in ways that help you to create and capture value.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Duff HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 12, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Negotiating is a critical skill in just about all areas of life, but especially when you're supposed to be a leader at work. Michael Watkins' book Shaping the Game: The New Leader's Guide to Effective Negotiating does a very nice job in laying out the necessary skills, as well as giving you the strategic tools you need to be successful at it.

Contents: Introduction; Understand Terms and Conditions; Negotiate Strategically; Match Situation to Strategy; Plan to Learn and Influence; Shape the Game; Organize to Improve; Conclusion; Notes; Recommended Reading; Index; About the Author

Watkins takes you through the life of a soon-to-be new employee of a fictional company. The employee is trying for a sales management job, and he has to negotiate his way through three potential job situations with three potential employers. His skill in carrying on these simultaneous discussions is only the beginning of his deal-making. When he finally accepts one and gets on-board, he realizes that there are some make-or-break issues that, if not successfully navigated, will sink both him *and* the company. It's a classic turn-around situation, and the stakes are the survival of the company. Using this storyline, the author presents the necessary skills needed to get all the parties to the table, to get everyone communicating openly (or as open as is possible), and to learn how to adapt your style of negotiating to fit the particular scenario. I think for me, the most valuable aspect of the book was learning that a "one size fits all" approach to deal-making doesn't work. Working out a one-time deal (such as the sale of your used car to a stranger) is far different than working out an on-going partnership (such as between your company and a strategic buyer or supplier).
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Rolf Dobelli HALL OF FAME on November 23, 2006
Format: Hardcover
This excellent guide to negotiation is concise, highly readable and eminently practical. Author Michael Watkins simply and clearly outlines the essentials every negotiator must know. More importantly, he situates negotiation where it belongs - at the very center of every leader's required set of skills. He duly notes that negotiations differ in many ways, and that a negotiator needs to adapt a strategic approach to each situation and context. Where appropriate, he draws on the work of other writers about negotiation, sometimes correcting their broad generalizations and oversimplifications. He illustrates his advice about negotiation with the story of Paul, an executive whose career exposes him to various negotiating situations requiring a range of skills. This tactic could be hackneyed or hokey, but in Watkin's hands, it works well. We highly recommend this book as an excellent tool for honing your negotiation and leadership skills.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By negotations addict on February 15, 2009
Format: Hardcover
As always, Michael Watkins' materials are worth reading and full of well founded, practical, advice. He should however, seriously consider changing either his editors or publishing house. I cannot recall reading a book with so many typographical errors. The irritation these caused interfere with the message he is conveying.
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