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In today’s podcast on negotiation skills, we will discuss how to overcome blockage in a negotiation. In particular, we’ll focus on identifying stumbling blocks, exploring alternatives, and moving towards agreement.
Usually we think of blockage in terms of stumbling blocks, or obstacles, to agreement. But blockage can also be any impediment to creating maximum value. In other words, weâ€™re not only interested in removing obstacles to a deal but also in removing obstacles to a better deal. Doing this successfully often requires thinking outside the box, that is, thinking creatively.
1) How does Peter suggest restarting talks with Maxine?
He says he has been â€œthinking aboutâ€ their companies, and if she is still open to the idea he “was wondering” if they could “get together to talk briefly about some other possibilities.” Overall, the tone of Peterâ€™s suggestion is positive and the content is not too specific. At this point, he is just trying to get Maxine interested.
2) What does Peter identifying as the main stumbling block to a deal?
Peter identifies price as the main stumbling block to a deal.
3) What does Peter mean when he says, “It’s not a question of growth for us, it’s a question of survival.”
Peter describes how the overall market tendency is towards increasing consolidation of companies. He is saying that small companies like his and Maxine’s must merge to have a chance to survive in the new market.
4) What is Peter’s key insight that enables Maxine and him to overcome their blockage?
Peter’s key insight is that if Maxine values her own company so highly, she will probably value his company highly as well. Since his ultimate goal is to sell out his business for a handsome profit, he may be able to achieve that goal now by selling his company to Maxine. In other words, he thinks outside the box to reverse the roles of buyer and seller in the negotiation.
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