Business Negotiation January 7, 2014

Intimidation by Raising the Stakes

Negotiating in an environment where the stakes keep rising has all the tension of a high stakes poker game. A good bluff can make the other player drop out. But if your opponent had the cards you can lose your shirt.

A friend of mine was involved in a divorce action. He and his wife had already settled on a number of issues. The major issue remaining was the amount of alimony and the length of time it would be paid. His wife insisted on $5000 a month for eight years. My friend was willing to pay $3500 a month for five years. Neither would budge from that position. Talks broke down.

At that point his wife decided to raise the stakes. She backed away from previous agreements and increased her demands in every area. She demanded a certified audit of all their assets. Her lawyer initiated actions to tie up major business assets so they could not be sold, transferred or borrowed against.

Suddenly my friend was faced with a difficult choice. If he continued to hold out for the $3500 which he felt fair and affordable, he faced potentially disastrous consequences. His business would be tied up for years. Legal costs would soar. If the case went to a judge, there was even some chance that alimony payments might be more than $5000 a month and continue permanently. The stakes were high. My friend settled for $4700 a month for eight years.

Industrial buyers sometimes raise the stakes when dealing with distributors. One negotiation I recall involved an electrical distributor who had serviced our Los Angeles division for four years. Because the economy was depressed, we were anxious to reduce costs. We decided to open distributor bidding on our total California requirement. This represented a dollar volume four times greater than the Los Angeles account. Low bidder take all. The stakes were high.

For the Los Angeles distributor, this was a difficult choice. He could hold the price and risk losing his position in Los Angeles, or he could bid low and win the much larger contract covering California. The distributor chose to bid low, but not low enough. Another distributor reacted to the high stakes by dropping prices almost 20 percent.

THE PROGRAM WAS GREAT! MY SEMINAR LEADER AND THE STRUCTURE OF THE COURSE KEPT ME CONSTANTLY STIMULATED. I NOW AM BETTER PREPARED TO GO INTO AN IMPORTANT NEGOTIATION MEETING AND STAY IN CONTROL, WHILE FINISHING THE MEETING SATISFIED.

Deanna D.
CASE MANAGER at THE JACKSON LABORATORY

IF YOU HAVE THE TRAINING BUDGET AND TWO DAYS TO SPARE, YOU'LL STRUGGLE TO FIND A PROGRAM MORE FAR-REACHING, ON-POINT, AND INSTANTLY IMPLEMENTABLE.

Jeff G.
BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER at THE M.K. MORSE COMPANY

EXCELLENT COURSE, BRINGS MORE CONFIDENCE IN MY ABILITY TO NEGOTIATE. I THINK THIS COURSE IS A MUST FOR ALL EMPLOYEES WHO DEAL WITH CUSTOMERS.

John S.
CHIEF ENGINEERING MANAGER at EXXONMOBIL

THIS WAS VERY EFFECTIVE WITH A STRONG FOCUS ON BOTH-WIN NEGOTIATING.

Kathleen L.
SENIOR ANALYST at BLUE CROSS/BLUE SHIELD OF MICHIGAN

THE KARRASS CLASS WAS THE SINGLE BEST TRAINING CLASS/SEMINAR I HAVE EVER ATTENDED. EVERY TIME WE DID AN EXERCISE IT TAUGHT YOU WHAT TO DO DIFFERENTLY NEXT TIME. THANKS.

Kim C.
PROCUREMENT at AMERICAN EXPRESS

THIS PROGRAM HAS GREATLY INCREASED MY CONFIDENCE AND ABILITY TO NEGOTIATE FOR MYSELF AS WELL AS MY COMPANY.

LaDonna E.
SENIOR STRATEGIC BUYER at HALLMARK

THE NEGOTIATING CLASS WAS VERY INFORMATIVE. THE INSTRUCTOR PROVIDED AN INSPIRATIONAL MESSAGE THAT CAN BE APPLIED TO EVERYDAY LIFE.

Mary S.
INTERNATIONAL SOURCING at FMC TECHNOLOGIES

WE NEGOTIATE EVERY DAY OF OUR LIVES, BOTH PERSONALLY AND PROFESSIONALLY. THIS COURSE DEFINES THE PROCESS AND PROVIDES TECHNIQUES TO ACHIEVE SUCCESSFUL RESULTS.

Phillip H.
VICE PRESIDENT at GE

PRIOR TO THIS CLASS I FELT AS THOUGH I WAS GETTING EATEN ALIVE BY INTERNAL NEGOTIATIONS WITH SALES REPS. NOW I FEEL PREPARED TO CHALLENGE WHAT THEY ARE SAYING AND BET TO THEIR REAL NEEDS.

Steve Q.
PLANNER at HONEYWELL

MANY PEOPLE FAIL TO ACHIEVE THEIR POTENTIAL BECAUSE THEY DON’T SEE THE OPPORTUNITIES TO NEGOTIATE A WIN/WIN AGREEMENT WITH THEIR COLLEAGUES. THIS CLASS IS AN EYE OPENER TO THIS DYNAMIC..

Stuart B.
CONTRACTS MANAGER at HEWLETT-PACKARD
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