Negotiation Case Studies January 12, 2010

Is There a Change in Major Business Negotiations?

In the last several weeks we all were ‘treated’ to the Costco-Coca Cola re-negotiation where Coke (seller) demanded higher pricing from Costco. Then there was the Time Warner – Fox TV re-negotiation where Fox (seller) demanded higher pricing from Time Warner...

In the last several weeks we all were ‘treated’ to the Costco-Coca Cola re-negotiation where Coke (seller) demanded higher pricing from Costco. Then there was the Time Warner – Fox TV re-negotiation where Fox (seller) demanded higher pricing from Time Warner.

Normally these types of negotiations are ‘closed door’ negotiations . Now the public and media are suddenly involved.

All negotiations have an ‘organizational’ component that comes into play. In these two cases, one side decided it was in their best interest to enlarge the organization; and to use organizational power to their advantage. In the case of the Time Warner – Fox negotiation, even politicians were incorporated into the ‘organization’.

These were some pretty major re-negotiations. And in each case, one side decided that it was to their advantage to take the negotiation public. Certainly with the Web, Blogs, Twitter and many other forms of communication, one side can create almost immediate public opinion. If developed correctly this can provide a source of power in their negotiation.

In your opinion, for these two specific cases, did this strategy work, or back-fire?

Are we likely to see more of this type of negotiating tactic in the future?

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