When you’re at the negotiation table, you want results skewed in your favor. The person you’re negotiating with wants results skewed in their favor, too. The negotiator who is best prepared will likely win the day.
To help you get ahead and boost your negotiation skills, here is a compilation of the best books on the topic. These five books made the list for their clear content, effective strategies, and sound advice. Most negotiations seminars rely on the concepts discussed in these books to prepare their trainees.
Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement without Giving In
This book was written by Roger Fisher and William L. Ury in 1981. In 1991, it was co-authored by Bruce Patton. The book has been a Business Week bestseller for many years.
Roger Fisher was a law professor emeritus at Harvard. He was also a director of the Harvard Negotiation Project. William L. Ury is a negotiation expert and co-founder of the Harvard Program on Negotiation.
In partnership with former president Jimmy Carter, William Ury also founded the International Negotiation Network. Bruce Patton is a distinguished fellow and a co-founder of the Harvard Negotiation Project.
Getting to Yes is a book that works best for entry-level negotiators. The updated version comes highly recommended for today’s entrepreneurs and startup founders.
Getting to Yes introduces readers to the key concepts of strategic negotiations. The co-authors break down complex strategies. The book guides people towards success in different types of negotiation scenarios.
The co-authors prepare readers to identify opportunities and common mistakes people are likely to experience in negotiation settings. With a stimulating set of real-world examples, the reader learns practical ways to overcome objections without conceding value.
Some key functions of the book include:
- Introducing readers to essential negotiation concepts and strategies
- Advising readers on how to keep people separate from positions
- Introducing strategies to bring others to the bargaining table and keep them there until a deal is made
- Explaining the concept of having the best alternative to a negotiated agreement (BATNA)
- Providing illustrations of how real-world negotiators have handled complex situations
Negotiation Genius: How to Overcome Obstacles and Achieve Brilliant Results at the Bargaining Table and Beyond
Deepak Malhotra is an American economist with great experience in international and ethnic dispute resolution. Max Hal Bazerman is a business psychology academic. He has authored around 20 books on topics related to negotiation.
The authors have extensive experience in teaching negotiation seminars. They also both have involvement in high stakes situations in business and politics. In the book, the authors use their real-life experiences to take readers through the intricacies of negotiation.
The book focuses on human behavior and how to use psychology for maximum effect. The two authors cover strategies for expert negotiators in business, politics, and other areas of conflict.
Getting Ready to Negotiate: The Getting to Yes Workbook
Roger Fisher is a Harvard Law professor, while Danny Ertel is an expert in relationship management and negotiation.
This workbook offers practical tips for negotiators at different levels. Offering advice on preparation, this book includes planning documents, sample matrices, and sample questions. These pages serve as great resources for guiding negotiators to success. Other resources include case studies, blueprints, and charts.
The Millionaire Next Door: The Surprising Secrets of America’s Wealthy
The Millionaire Next Door is a must-have for all budding negotiators. The book also has practical lessons on raising kids to be disciplined about money. The Millionaire Next Door is a seminar favorite as a lifestyle and money management book, not strictly a negotiation book.
Thomas J. Stanley is a professor of marketing, while William Danko is a marketing emeritus at the State University of New York at Albany.
The Millionaire Next Door explores the seven common qualities of self-made millionaires. According to the authors, the real millionaires of America are not necessarily celebrities living flashy lives. Instead, the truly wealthy often live thrifty lives.
The book recounts how the wealthy negotiate for most of their purchases to get the best deals. In addition to giving pointers on effective negotiating, this book teaches the path to financial responsibility and financial independence.
Never Split the Difference: Negotiating As If Your Life Depended On It
Never Split the Difference is a practical bestseller written by Christopher Voss and Tahl Raz. Christopher Voss is a former FBI hostage negotiator, while Tahl Raz is a journalist. The two authors continue to host expert negotiation seminars for corporates and law enforcement agents.
Never Split the Difference is a book for mid-to-expert level negotiators. The authors take readers through practical scenarios for claiming value during negotiations. The authors emphasize the use of intuition and emotional intelligence to win at negotiations. Readers learn nine key principles of persuasion for business and personal life.