Tuesday, November 13, 2012

N09: Relationships in Negotiation

N09: Relationships in Negotiation


In this chapter, we address situations where negotiations become especially difficult, often to the point of stalemate or breakdown. As we have noted several times negotiation is a conflict management process, and all conflict situations have the potential for becoming derailed. As the title suggests that nature of negotiations are difficult to resolve, the causes of stalemate, impasse, or breakdown. The specific actions that the parties can take jointly to try to move the conflict back to a level where successful negotiation and conflict resolution can ensure.

In the first section, this chapter discussed about the nature of the negotiation, examine the causes of stalemate, impasse, or breakdown, and explore the characteristics of the difficult negotiations, including characteristics of the parties, the types of issues involved, and the process in play. Initially, we need to know the characteristics of the negotiations, which are difficult to resolve. The atmosphere, channels of communication, unclear definition of original issues, the great differences in the respective positions, the locked initial negotiating positions, and the hidden dissension in the same group or side characterize the process of conflict resolution.

The tools that we discussed are broad in function and in application, and they represent self-help for negotiators in dealing with stalled or problematic exchanges. None of these methods and remedies is a panacea, and each should be chosen and applied with sensitivity to the needs and limitations of the situations and of the negotiators involved. A truly confrontational breakdown, especially one that involves agreements of great impact or importance, sometimes justifies the introduction of individuals or agencies who themselves are not party to the dispute.


1. What are negotiations in communal relationship?

Parties in a communal sharing relationship:

v Are more cooperative and empathetic
v Craft better quality agreement
v Perform better on both decision making and motor tasks
v Focus their attention on the other party’s outcomes as well as their own
v Focus attention on the norms that develop about the way that they work together
v Are more likely to share information with the other and less likely to use coercive tactics
v Are more likely to use indirect communication about conflict issues, and develop a unique conflict structure
v May be more likely to use compromise or problem solving strategies for resolving conflicts

2. What are the four fundamental relationship forms?

Four fundamental relationship forms:

1. Communal sharing: A relation of unity, community, collective identity, and kindness, typically enacted among close kin. Such relationships are found in: families, clubs, fraternal organizations & neighborhoods

2. Authority ranking: A relationship of asymmetric differences, commonly exhibited in a hierarchical ordering of status and precedence.           

Examples include:

o   Subordinates to bosses
o   Soldiers to their commanded
o    Negotiators to their constituents

3. Equality matching: A one-to-one correspondence relationship in which people are distinct but equal, as manifested in balanced reciprocity (or tit-for-tat revenge)
Examples include:

College roommates

4. Market pricing

Based on metrics of valuation by which people compare different commodities and calculate exchange and cost/benefit ratios. Examples can be drawn from all kinds of buyer–seller transactions.

3. What are the key elements in managing negotiations within relationships?

ü  Perceptual and highly subjective in nature
ü  An individual can have a number of different, even conflicting, reputation
ü  Influenced by an individual’s personal characteristics and accomplishments.
ü  Develops over time; once developed, is hard to change. 
ü  Negative reputations are difficult to “repair”

Trust “An individual’s belief in and willingness to act on the words, actions and decisions of another”

Three things that contribute to trust

1.     Individual’s chronic disposition toward trust
2.     Situation factors
3.     History of the relationship between the parties

Two different types of trust:

Calculus-based trust: Individual will do what they say because they are rewarded for keeping their word or they fear the consequences of not doing what they say
Identification-based trust: Identification with the other’s desires and intentions.  Trust exists because the parties effectively understand and appreciate each other’s wants; mutual understanding is developed to the point that each can effectively act for the other.

Trust is different from distrust

Trust is considered to be confident positive expectations of another’s conduct
Distrust is defined as confident negative expectations of another’s conduct – i.e., we can confidently predict that some other people will act to take advantage of us
            Trust and distrust can co-exist in a relationship

Justice Can takes several forms:

Distributive justice: The distribution of outcomes
Procedural justice: The process of determining outcomes
Interactional justice: How parties treat each other in one-to-one relationships
Systemic justice how organizations appear to treat groups of individuals

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