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Published: Apr 04 , 2016
Author: Robin Copland

The great thing about negotiating is that it enables people – often from diverse backgrounds and polarised positions – to come together and strike deals to the long-term benefit of both parties. You do not have to agree to do business or sign treaties. The whole process of trading enables participants to park their differences for the greater good.

Published: Aug 08 , 2013
Author: Robin Copland

Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport has, for the past month, played host to a pawn in the international diplomacy game, one Edward Snowden. Mr Snowden is a "whistle-blower" who, depending on your point of view, has courageously defended the rights of downtrodden untermensch the world over, or on the other hand has committed a treasonous offence so heinous as to be punishable by a lengthy spell behind bars - a spell so long that all kinds of keys may just as well be thrown down various drains.

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Be Specific With What You Want

You are out for a drink and the bartender asks you – “What would you like?” to which you reply “Guess!”. “Alright then” he says, “How about a red wine?”. You shake your head to this and say “No, that’s not what I want. Guess again.” After much back and forth, the bartender is justifiably irritated and through gritted teeth he tells you “I have other customers I need to serve, you look like someone who would enjoy a refreshing Sauvignon Blanc so I’ll pour you one of those. Enjoy your night.” This is a silly analogy to what I observe every week in most negotiations. Often there is a lack of specific disclosure as to what it is that the party wants or they take a long time to bring this information forward...

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