Dueto the conflict nature of negotiations, emotions is an ubiquitousfeature, and therefore is potentially central to comprehending howpeople behave within, think about, and respond to bargainingsituations [ CITATION Tho102 l 1033 ].Kelly and Kaminskiene[ CITATION Kel16
l 1033 ]observe that emotions play a vital role in the searchfor dispute resolution, but are neither comprehended nor effectivelyaddressed by the individuals involved in the dispute. Conflict is anintractable part of the negotiation process, and it comprises threedimensions: behavioral, cognitive, and emotional. Therefore, anyskilled negotiator and mediator should give all these dimensionsequal priority. The reality is however that most mediators oftenprefer to ignore the emotional aspect due to the erroneous beliefthat emotions would complicate the process or hamper their ability tocontrol the disputants’ behavior. Such type of “lawyermediators”, as Kelly and Kaminskiene [ CITATION Kel16
l 1033 ]opt to call them, hold on to the belief that rational, objective,reasoned, consistent decision-making is the bedrock of any mediationprocess.
Therefore,in order to break the impasse, it is vital to recognize the emotionsinvolved in the negotiation. However, this does not involve directlyaddressing such emotions. As recommended by Jameson, Bodtker, andLinker [CITATION Jam10
l 1033 ],certain core issues directly related to emotional dissonance shouldbe addressed since “we neither have the expertise nor obligation toremedy most emotional situations. They list five primary concernswhich should be addressed: role, status, acceptance, affiliation,and, appreciation. The fixed pie concept enters into the picture ifboth parties hold steadfast to their viewpoints and are not ready forany compromise. Mediation can hardly be effective when partiesinvolved hold onto their “fixed pies”, therefore, it is importantto encourage at least one of the parties involved to consideracceptable compromises.
Thelast purchase I made involved a laptop computer. Thedecision-analytic approach is all about choosing from a variety ofpossible acts[CITATION Tur12 l 1033 ].Therefore, the possible options as well as their individual pros andcons are analyzed, and the option with the greatest output metricvalue is chosen. For that particular decision, I was offered twodifferent laptops, so the overall choices were four: I purchaseboth laptops, either one of the laptops, or none of them. However,based on my needs and financial positions, my choices werepractically three: I buy either of the laptops, or none of them. Ieventually purchased one of the laptops, after the decision analyticprocess, which highlighted the functional advantage of the laptopchosen. BATNA refers to the Best Alternative To an NegotiatedAgreement, and can be considered as a contingency of sorts. This isbecause the BATNA is taken once negotiations hit a dead end and thereis failure to reach an agreement. My BATNA was to repair my laptop’smotherboard. My motivation to purchase another laptop was driven bythe costly venture that replacement of my laptop’s motherboardinvolved. Therefore, rather than spend a huge amount in repair, I’drather add some extra funds and purchase another laptop.
Inmost negotiations, particularly ones that involve contract, forexample, professional services, difficulty in agreeing upon a totalcompensation fee is typically encountered. For instance, the serviceprovider may anticipate high compensation is they expect high chanceof success, while the buyer may make more prudent estimates.Contingent contracts resolves these divergent value estimates as wellas the probability of uncertain events which could affect thetransaction [CITATION Huf15 p 69 l 1033 ].They accomplish this by distinguishing different possible outcome andcompensating each based on the results observed.
Onecrucial element that governs such types of negotiations is the agendafrom previous negotiations. Due to the nature of their relationship,General Motors (GM) and United Auto Workers (UAW) have held numerousnegotiations over the course of their history Therefore, any newnegotiation will primarily have to consider the agreement reached inprevious negotiations so as to guide progress of the currentnegotiation process. For both parties, a review of past negotiations,including the gains, concessions, and timing often provides the bestlearning experience.
Framingis vital negotiation technique whereby the framer defines theconcerns at stake in a certain manner that will enable them to win anargument, reach consensus, or close a deal. A person’s frame isclosely tied to their viewpoint, and therefore, will differ for eachindividual within the negotiations. Negotiation is therefore allabout shifting the other individual’s frame so as to suit one’sown [CITATION Tho12 p 44 l 1033 ].Within thenegotiations between GM and UAW, both parties clearly had differentframes. General Motors wished to avert a strike and a possiblefinancial crisis, while the union desired to get the best deal fortheir over 52,600 workers working in various GM facilities across theU.S. The various issues that might have been discussed include thecompensation rates for the workers, various benefits, modes of wagecalculation, and such wage and labor related issues.
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Jameson, J. K., Bodtker, A. M., & Linker, T. (2010). Facilitating conflict transformation: Mediatorstrategies for eliciting emotional communication in a workplace conflict. Negotiation Journal, 26(1), 25. Retrieved from http://www.to-be.co.il/images/Games/1207/Facilitating%20Conflict%20Transformation.pdf
Kelly, E. J., & Kaminskiene, N. (2016). Importance of emotional intelligence in negotiation and mediation. International Comparative Jurisprudence.
Thomas, P., Paul, D., & Cadle, J. (2012). The Human Touch: Personal skills for professional success. Swindon: BCS.
Thompson, L. L., Wang, J., & Gunia, B. C. (2010). Negotiation. Annual Review of Psychology, 61, 491. Retrieved from http://www.annualreviews.org/doi/full/10.1146/annurev.psych.093008.100458
Thompson, L., & Fox, C. R. (2012). Negotiation Within and Between Groups in Organization: Levels of Analysis. In M. E. Turner (Ed.), Groups at Work: Theory and Research (p. 219). New York: Routledge.