A negotiation is an action that takes place in a relationship between (usually) 2 parties. However gentle, sweet, nice, courteous, respectful, etc., that the exchange may be, the bottom line is that the relationship is adversarial. This is obvious, because each is trying to get something from the other while giving up as little as possible.

The question for me then, is how can I remove the ‘adversarial’ rub in this relationship? How can I win the other party over, to give them the impression that we are on the same side? Sounds weird to make them feel we are actually on the same side? Not really. I’ve been using this type of negotiating psychology for years. It has consistently worked successfully for me.

To remove the ‘adversarial’ rub between yourself and the ‘other’, you create a third party. The third party can be your partner, your accountant, your bookkeeper, lawyer, spouse, etc. It really doesn’t matter who, because the person you’re negotiating with, is NEVER, I repeat NEVER, going to have any contact with them. Realize that you created a third party, trouble maker. In truth, they may not exist or if they do, they may not have any idea or knowledge that you’re negotiating a deal.

You will always be blaming this third party, who is constantly giving you grief on the price or whatever the matter is that you’re negotiating. When I say blame, you will actually call them ‘no good, blankety, blanks, pain in the butt, etc. (be creative)’. You want to create a situation where the other party isn’t going AGAINST YOU, but is trying to align themselves WITH YOU. They want you to be able to win over the third party, because you have made it appear that this third party is the stumbling block to them consummating the deal.

You tell the party you’re negotiating with, (in detail):

How you keep presenting their side of the argument to this third party.

How you keep trying to make them understand why the offer isn’t terrible, but to no avail.

How it falls on deaf ears.

How it’s so frustrating.

It’s been my experience that this strategy starts to bring this other person you’re negotiating with, closer to the deal you’re looking for. If it doesn’t, then you have a decision to make. Make the deal or walk away. It should start to work though. When they do start to move, you tell them you will bring this information to the third party. You give it a few days or more to get back to them (saying that this third party has been busy). The idea is to create anxiety in the other party. The more anxious you have them become, the more liberal they should become in their offer. When you do come back to them, it’s never for exactly what was offered – always, still a difference. The idea is to have the other party make an offer to come up or split the difference, whereas each side is making concessions. If not, ask them for something, anything that you can bring to the third party and that you can say to the third party, this is it. This is the deal. This should be the final touch to getting as much as you can out of the negotiation.

Keep in mind though, that a good deal is only a good deal, if both sides are pleased. Keep it a two way street.  Everyone needs to feel they have won a little something.


  1. Never accept the first offer
  2. The party that is the hungriest will give the most to make the deal
  3. Always make it appear that you’re willing to walk away from the deal – That way you’ll find out quickly, if you have the upper hand
  4. Let the other party do most of the talking. Speak as little as possible.
  5. Wait until they say something you really like: “It’s a well-known proposition that you know who’s going to win a negotiation; it’s he who pauses the longest.” – Robert Court
  6. Always put yourself in the other persons position. What do they need from this situation to make it work.

Harris Glasser – Author, Lecturer, Business & Personal Consultant “ It’s My Money & I Want It!”
(more next week)