Conflict Negotiation

Preparing to Negotiate

Step 1:  Define the Conflict Issue

  • What is bothering you?
  • Why does it bother you?
  • What is the behavior of the person that creates a conflict?
  • What behavior would you like to see from the other person?

“When you [behave in this way], that is a problem for me because ________.”

Step 2:  Identify & Evaluate Your Goals

  • Why do I want to resolve this conflict?
  • What is a good resolution for me?
  • How important is it to me that we reach this resolution?
  • How do I want to be viewed by _______?
  • How does this situation affect the way I view myself?

Step 3:  Should I Negotiate?

  • How interdependent are you with ___________?
  • What leverage do you have?
  • What benefits will ____________ gain by negotiating with you?
  • What might be the risks of negotiating?
  • What is your BATNA (Best Alternative to a Negotiated Agreement)?
  • If you decide to negotiate, don’t delay; set up meeting as soon as possible.

Step 4:  Arrange a Meeting

  • Request the meeting.
  • State the problem you wish to discuss as you defined it in Step 1.
  • Say you would like to find a solution that benefits both of you.

Negotiating the Conflict  

Step 5:  Come to the Meeting Prepared

  • Thank the person for their time and willingness to meet with you.
  • Explain your point of view and offer suggestions for solving the problem.
  • Be willing to listen (because you may hear new information or suggestions)
  • Stay focused on the goals and interests that brought about this meeting.
  • Steer conversation toward something you can agree on.
  • Seek a solution that benefits both of you (Win-Win) first, then look toward a compromise.

Step 6:  Make an Agreement [contract]

  • Agreement must be clear and address voluntary behaviors for both parties.
  • What behavior, who, when, how will the agreement be carried out?
  • Check to make sure you both have the same understanding of what is being agreed upon.
  • Ask the other party if they agree and confirm your agreement.

Step 7:  Follow Through

  • Do what you say you would do promptly.
  • Thank the other party for complying with the agreement.
  • If the other party does not comply, set up another meeting and adjust the original agreement.
  • If other party fails to comply repeatedly, re-examine your BATNA and whether it is worth your time.