Polarise Your Options

Would you rather be stuck at home, at a beautiful national park, or on the highway in between the two?

Unless you’re a rare breed that enjoys peak hour traffic and being surrounded by other frustrated drivers, you’d much prefer to be either at home or the national park. Home offers the obvious advantages of comfort and freedom, whereas the national park likely offers nicer scenery and prospects of adventure. 1-mile-an-hour traffic flow in between offers neither.

Remember that the same concept applies to negotiation and deal-making. If each party to the negotiation is directly opposed on five separate issues, it may satisfy neither party to just meet in the middle on every single one. You may be better off giving the opposition everything they want on Issue X, just so you can get everything you need on Issue Y in return.

Balanced deals absolutely have their place, and are often the most optimal solution — particularly if you run heavy risks if you overly compromise on any specific issue. Just don’t forget that polarised deals can be equally viable, for instance when negotiating your wage versus vacation time, or trying to buy a product for later resale that absolutely needs to have a standout feature.

2019-02-20T18:30:07+00:00 By |Tags: |
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