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Course review: Successful Negotiation – Essential Strategies and Skills

Understand negotiation tactics and develop your skills with practical psychological tools.

“You do not get what you want. You get what you negotiate.”  ~Harvey Mackay 

Hold your horses right there! You might be asking yourself if this review is going to be worth your time. Guess what? You are negotiating with yourself at this very moment. And oops! This review is at stake.

Regardless of which domain you are focusing your career on, negotiating will be an inevitable part. Let alone a career, it is an inevitable part of all of our lives.

George J. Siedel, American author and professor at the Ross School of Business, University of Michigan.

I wasn’t aware of how often we use it in our daily life until I attended the Successful Negotiation: Essential Strategies and Skills course by University of Michigan and started noticing the frequency of situations dealt with through negotiations. Be it resolving fights within the family to discussing a salary with employers/employees, not many of us realize that we negotiate on a daily basis. The skills and tactics for a negotiation to be successful are, I believe, some of the most essential ones we need to be armed with.

The course

I used to think that the main part of negotiation is, well, negotiation. Nothing could be farther from the truth. In reality, most of the time for a successful negotiation is spent on the preparation for it. Preparing the negotiation strategy is essential. We need to analyze our positions, interests, risks, and costs to ensure that negotiating in that situation is worth it. The actual negotiation process includes getting to know the opposing party and their interests.

There are a number of psychological tools we can use and traps that we should avoid like escalation, anchoring, and so on. These are what the course focuses on. In addition to this, the course covers lectures on alternative dispute resolution (ADR), cross-cultural negotiations, ethics, agents, ADR tools, deal-making mindset vs implementation mindset, big picture focus, and much more.

The course is easy-to-understand and the more you are into it, you will realize how relatable each topic is. All the assessments have well-described real-life scenarios and this gives you a chance to apply and think about the points learnt in these contexts. This is an aspect I really loved.

The Instructor

The course consists of materials and lectures by George J. Siedel, an American author and professor at the Ross School of Business, University of Michigan. Following graduation from the University of Michigan and Cambridge University, he worked as an attorney in a professional corporation before joining the faculty at the University of Michigan. Siedel is well-known for his approach to negotiation strategy which combines theory with practical advice and one can easily notice it throughout the delivery of this course. Even though it is rendered online, it is easy to connect with the practical side of each topic.

Grading

The requirement for receiving the certificate of completion is passing the final exam with a grade of 80% or more. The questions mostly test practical knowledge which I found to be an added advantage.

There is also an ungraded activity provided along each module which is useful to hone our skills. After the activity, every detail of the negotiation involved is vividly explained and this helps to understand it even better in the light of real-world negotiations.

Time Commitment

This course has a workload of 75 minutes per week/module and 7 modules in total. The only drawback I found within the entire course is that the videos were quite lengthy. But it was made up for by the light-hearted yet sensible delivery of the lectures.

Being someone who prefers binge-watching lessons, I took just 2 weeks to complete the course. But I would suggest taking as much time as you can as that would give you time to reflect on each of the topics.

My certificate of completion

Conclusion

This course is for anyone out there who wants to understand negotiation tactics better and work on their negotiating skills. I took these classes out of pure interest on the topic and because I believed that this was something everyone had to know.

I am sure the ideas and tools discussed during the entire duration of the course will be handy in my daily life as well as in my future workplace. Choosing this course was worth it for me!

Naveena Merin Vinny Profile Image

Naveena Merin Vinny

I love exploring new things and reading. I am still figuring things out. Currently pursuing a Bachelor of Technology degree in Computer Science and Engineering because of my love for coding

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