Articles Tagged with negotiation

Is civility in our society spiraling downward? It often feels like that nowadays.  This does not have to be the case in our families and in our own circles of colleagues and friends if we pay attention to how we are engaging in the resolution of different points of view.   Civility is more than just politeness.  It is possible to disagree with dignity and respect.  Yes, it is possible to go high rather than low when a challenge presents itself. Continue Reading

How can words or minor interpersonal tensions lead to major trauma and in some cases national trauma?  As a conflict professional, I am constantly intrigued by the power of words, actions and inaction. An act or expression may or may not be intended to cause harm.  Even in a close-knit family, we sometimes do not realize the harm.  Once an initial event happens, how do we avoid escalating the harm?  Continue Reading

Does Blame help reach a result in the negotiation process?  In my opinion, it is counter-productive.  This week we saw a lot of blame coming out of Washington D.C., in a negotiation without resolution and an eventual shut down.  This led me to think about my own work and what happens when blame is assigned and then continues as the focus.  During a negotiation, the parties do need to take responsibility for their own actions.  This can be done in a productive way without shaming or humiliating the other party. There is a distinction between assigning and taking responsibility and what happens when the parties stay at the level of blame.  Continue Reading

Entering into a negotiation with uncertainty is not necessarily a bad thing.  Thinking that we know all of the answers before a negotiation starts can lead to less flexible, positional thinking.  A reasonable agreement in divorce is different for each family.  For that reason, we can enter into the negotiation with uncertainty about what is best for one particular family so long as we are flexible in considering available options and work in good faith to find the most reasonable solution.   Some individuals chose to stay in limbo due to uncertainty about outcome.  The uncertainty can lead to fear – that may prohibit productive thinking. Continue Reading

meeting-room-3-1239345-300x221High-stakes negotiations are often characterized as intense back-and-forth battles where only one party wins. The winner takes all while the other party may suffer a loss of both objectives and dignity. A loss of dignity in negotiations for a prenup can have a long-lasting effect on the relationship.   Negotiating a prenup can (and should) be about coming to a mutually beneficial agreement for both parties. While the marital relationship is considered an economic as well as social partnership, establishing a foundation for the economics of the relationship can be challenging.  The goal of the negotiation should be conducive to creating a durable, family-oriented agreement. Below are five reasons the “art of the deal” is not a zero sum game when it comes to family: Continue Reading

One of the most common questions I receive from clients is how to bring up a prenuptial agreement with a future spouse. There is no uniform answer to this because every couple has its own dynamics, and a prenup conversation should reflect this. With that being said, there are some basic ideas to help your path to a prenup go more smoothly.  Continue Reading

With so much end of year busyness, it sometimes takes effort to stop for a moment to remember what is important.  I was in the post office last week to send out some holiday presents when one of those moments occurred.[1]  An elderly man slowly walked up to the counter and placed a dime on the counter and stated [to the postal clerk]: “That’s what I owe you.”  The clerk replied: “That wasn’t necessary. You didn’t have to come all the way back.” The man said, “I owed it and I found it in my pocket after I left”.  Continue Reading