Start with No
, by negotiation coach Jim Camp, is a tenaciously contrarian guide to the art and science of give-and-take that proposes a viable alternative for today's prevailing "win-win" approach. Beginning with an inverse premise--that having the right to say "no" and veto any agreement is actually the key to favorably concluding the various deals and transactions we face every day--Camp's procedure counters the common emotion-based urge to compromise ("a defeatist mind-set from the first handshake") with a series of less intuitive decision-oriented actions. "My system teaches you how to control what you can control in a negotiation," Camp writes. "When you do so, you can and will succeed (understanding that success sometimes means walking away with a polite good-bye)." Emphasizing the importance of this underlying attitude, his method combines related steps like defining a mission, understanding the adversary, assessing fiscal and emotional investments, preparing an agenda, and tracking behavior. Each is fully explained, as are associated skills such as how to structure a question to elicit a truly helpful response (e.g., "What else do you need?" vs. "Is there anything else you need?"). Despite its unorthodox manner, if diligently applied, the route that Camp details here may indeed produce winning results. --Howard Rothman
From Publishers Weekly
Negotiation coach Camp has been under the radar since 1989, helping clients reach deals at Motorola, Merrill Lynch and IBM. He now brings his advice to the general public. Asserting that the term "win-win" has become a clich, he suggests readers enter into every negotiation knowing that if the offer doesn't meet their expectations, they should walk away. He also advocates leaving emotions out of negotiations. "Whether we like it or not, it really is a jungle out there in the world of business, and it's crawling with predators." Camp's solid advice will help people control negotiations and prepare themselves for anything.
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