When I first started learning about negotiation skills, everyone talked about win-win as being the most desired outcome. As a negotiating rookie, I had a lot of trouble with this concept. Surely negotiation is about getting what I want so how can I do that without the other person losing. Is win-win really possible?

As time went by I learned that this mutually beneficial outcome is often possible because both parties don’t necessarily want the same thing, however I continued to struggle with the terminology until I read a book called Negotiate and Win by Don Misino.

Don was a police sniper who trained a hostage negotiator, ands as you can imagine he has been involved in a number of high profile, high stakes negotiations throughout his career. In his book he introduced me to the term “Happy-Happy” outcomes. Don defines this as an end result where both parties are “happy” with the final outcome.

This terminology sit much more comfortably with me and has helped me enormously in many negotiation situations. When I remember that my goal is an outcome with which we can both be happy, I seem to have more flexibility and more sensitivity and as a result build better long term relationships with the people I negotiate with.

Try it out and see for yourself . And don’t forget to share your thoughts by posting a comment.
Have a happy day!

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