Friday, April 4, 2014

The Chess Game of Mediation

Strategic negotiation is about as straightforward as a good game of chess.  The game doesn't begin until a few 'give away' moves have taken place.  In mediation, these are the outrageous demands, countered by the insulting offers.

The best negotiators are always contemplating the expected reaction of their opponent in response to another move.  That is why it sometimes takes so long to respond to your adversaries offer when it does not fit within your own expectations.  The rules of reciprocity, rewards and incentives all apply as numbers take hold in the negotiation of commercial cases.  In order to get to a reasonable offer, you will need to demonstrate that you are going to get into a reasonable range through your demand.

Like the pieces on a chess board, some moves are lateral, some diagonal and some take two moves into account at once.  The pitter pat of the pawns is only the preliminary phase.  Eventually, you need to be protecting your King and Queen from attack and demise.

How do you apply game theory to negotiation to win your client the best result in mediation?