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Published: Nov 09 , 2017
Author: Sam Macbeth

The climate of fear for British MP’s seemed to rise to new levels last week – with one BBC reporter stating that the emerging stories of sexual harassment would be bigger than the expenses scandal of a few years ago. Labor MP Clive Lewis is now being…

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Published: Nov 02 , 2017
Author: Tom Feinson

Recently Uber boss Travis Kalanick took an “indefinite leave of absence”. A phrase that coexists in the big book of signals next to “spending more time with the family” and just after “you have my 100% support”. True to form he has subsequently resigned. The…

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Published: Sep 21 , 2017
Author: Robin Copland

I find this rather difficult to write, as I am a person of some size myself, but I shall press ahead anyway in the fond hope that no one is offended. Recently, on a holiday in the USA, my wife and I found ourselves on an internal flight on a budget US airline. If I share with you at the outset that this airline made Ryanair look like the Savoy hotel of the airline industry, you’ll begin to get the picture. Anyhow, I was allocated seat 4B on a plane that the check-in steward told me was completely full – a middle seat; my wife was in seat 4E – a middle seat on the other side of the aisle. I had missed the bit about pre-booking your seat for $25 a seat; how full was the flight from Phoenix-Mesa to Rapid City going to be, for heaven’s sake? It turned out to be very full. Who knew? As we were waiting to board,...

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Published: Aug 24 , 2017
Author: Alan Smith

No figures have been revealed as yet to how much Daniel Craig will get for reprising his James Bond role, which he again claims will be his last time, but I’ve got a feeling he may not need to head for the basics aisle in his local supermarket any time soon. Bond 25, which will be released in October 2019 under what I hope will be a much catchier title, is the 25th Bond (Dhooh), and Craig’s 5th.

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Published: Apr 13 , 2017
Author: Alan Smith

Not anymore. We’ve all seen them. Movies when a cry goes out for a doctor on board. If you fly United and you are a doctor you should put your head down, because you may be about to be thrown off the flight. What a disaster! For everybody concerned. A doctor was violently removed from a United Airlines flight by aviation police officials at Chicago’s O’Hare international airport on Sunday, in an incident captured and shared via social media several million times on video by fellow passengers.

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Published: Mar 09 , 2017
Author: Stephen White

In the world of internet start-ups and disruptive technology the valuations placed on popular new entrants into a market continue to be completely out of whack with their profitability, as they were in the dot.com boom and bust 20 years ago. Companies with a market valuation of $1 billion or more, known as tech unicorns, include Snap Inc. the owners of Snapchat, Airbnb, and Uber. Snapchat is currently valued at between $25-35 billion. But it has never made a profit and its net worth, assets less liabilities, is only $1.5 billion. Airbnb has a market value of around $30 billion, about $7 billion more than physical competitor Hilton, but turned in its first profit only in the second half of 2016. And Uber, currently valued at between $60 -70 billion, made a $3 billion loss last year according to Bloomberg

Published: Nov 24 , 2016
Author: Alan Smith

Two questions: When negotiating, do you want the other side to act reasonably? And, Is it a good strategy to be reasonable when negotiating? Most people will say yes to the first question. It would be crazy not to. The second however creates a bit more of a dilemma. We are sometimes tempted to go high or low, pad and exaggerate what we really anticipate being able to achieve. Because that is what we should do right?...

Published: Nov 17 , 2016
Author: Alan Smith

I am a big fan of Bob Dylan. Well his music anyway. Other people, not quite so much. A member of the Swedish Academy that recently offered Mr Dylan the Noble Prize has accused Bob of being both rude and arrogant. Apparently Bob had refused to return phone calls or even acknowledge the offer and spurned the academy rather as one would spurn a rabid dog! As the Daily Mail reported, to accuse Bob Dylan of being rude is like attacking Humpty Dumpty for being an egg. He is legendary for his ambivalence to fans. He turns his back on them and grunts between songs in his live shows on stage. In person he is no better.

Published: Nov 10 , 2016
Author: Stephen White

I predict a spike in the birth-rate at the beginning of August 2017 because thousands of people, in the US and around the world, were making babies last night. There is much anecdotal evidence that after a trauma people take solace with each other. How many couples will have gone to bed last night whispering to each other ‘WTF (Will Trump Flourish?)’ before rolling over and occupying themselves with other things?

Published: Jul 07 , 2016
Author: Alan Smith

The hunt for negotiators has begun on a Global scale. Offers of help from all over the place, New Zealand, Australia and no doubt every part of the Commonwealth and beyond to help the UK deal with the inevitable day to day transactional not to mention the framing and strategic negotiations that will result from the Brexit.

Published: Apr 21 , 2016
Author: Alan Smith

When I tell people what I do for a living, lots of people are intrigued, often they don’t really get what it is. I like to tell them that negotiation is the art of getting more of what you want, that seems to intrigue them more. Hopefully that turns into a business opportunity, tart that I am.

Published: Apr 14 , 2016
Author: Stephen White

Confidence is one of the important attributes of a good negotiator. Many HR recruiters believe that this is an attribute they need to look for in those who will be conducting negotiations for the organisation (sales, marketing, procurement, Board level), so that testing for confidence as a personality trait is therefore very important

Published: Mar 24 , 2016
Author: Stephen White

Why did President Putin suddenly and unexpectedly announce last week that Russia was pulling its armed forces out of Syria? It was an announcement that took every political commentator by surprise, and subsequently there were as many theories to explain the situation as there were commentators.

Published: Mar 17 , 2016
Author: Alan Smith

Well there are actually! Negotiation involves cold logic, cutting through all the verbiage, careful and clear analysis of the volatile and unpredictable environment before coolly selecting the correct option.

Published: Feb 11 , 2016
Author: Stephen White

I had a haircut today, and learnt something simple but useful. Chatting to the barber I asked if he had ever been to a particular local restaurant. Yes, he said, but it was about 5 years ago and it wasn’t very good. He had found a small piece of plastic in his mouth whilst eating his meal, and he was unimpressed with the response from the waiter. He explained.

Published: Jan 28 , 2016
Author: Alan Smith

My daughter is a fairly recent and slightly nervous driver. One of the benefits of the children getting older is that sporadically Dad’s cabs get a Saturday off, and even an occasional lift home from the pub after a couple of cheeky sherbets on a Friday night.

Published: Jan 14 , 2016
Author: Stephen White

One of the defining qualities of a good negotiator is the ability to manufacture unusual tradeable variables apparently out of thin air. An example of this is how time is used as a variable. Most people would agree that a day comprises 24 hours. But management consultants know that a day in terms of charging fees is more likely to be 7 hours, so clients who need more than 7 hours find themselves paying for more than a day.

Published: Oct 09 , 2015
Author: Alan Smith

Saturday night was a very dark time for me and many of my English friends and colleagues. Whilst no one actually died, it feels like many of our dreams and hopes did. If you enjoy sport and even if you don’t you will be able to imagine just how devastating it is for an Englishman that the National rugby team was knocked out of its home World Cup tournament, by their old nemesis Australia. The only host nation ever to have been knocked out of their own tournament at such an early stage, the loss came fast on the heels of the defeat by Wales the previous week, a game that frankly England really should have won.

Published: Sep 25 , 2015
Author: Romana Henry

I go running regularly with a good friend and neighbor who happens to be a criminal defense lawyer. She is married to another lawyer who works in property and estate settlement etc. On our runs, we exchange tips and advice. She tells me how expensive it would be to divorce my husband, why I shouldn’t burn a red light and why helping my 17 year old daughter to obtain fake I.D. to get into pubs really isn’t a good idea. Why I really must make a will soon, when to put my house on the market and what home improvements not to bother with...

Published: May 14 , 2015
Author: Stephen White

The recent Argentinian film ‘Wild Tales’ is a compilation of six unrelated fictions about people in desperate situations. I would recommend it to anyone who likes entertaining storytelling, but one of the segments has particular interest for negotiators.

Published: Oct 03 , 2014
Author: Alan Smith

What is the worst thing you can do when negotiating? Lots of things I guess but probably the most obvious one of all is a lack of preparation. Last year was the 30th anniversary of the bestselling book by Chris Ryan, Bravo, Two, Zero. I’ve got to be honest when it first came out I did not read it. I thought it would only be of interest to military types and frankly was a bit embarrassed to read it on the train or tube, which was my main reading time back then...

Published: Aug 14 , 2014
Author: John McMillian

On September 18th, Scotland, part of the United Kingdom for 300 years, is holding a referendum on whether to split away from the rest of the UK and become an independent country. Assuming that there is a ‘Yes’ vote, the Scottish Government has a massive negotiating challenge ahead if it is to meet its self-imposed deadline of 24thMarch 2016; barely 18 months after the votes will be counted...

Published: Jul 24 , 2014
Author: Mark Simpson, Scotwork New Zealand

The media has discovered that Council controlled Auckland Transport is using special shuttles to move staff around Auckland – apparently because it’s faster than the public transport they provide for the rest of us. When challenged Auckland Transport shot themselves in the foot and provided us with a beautiful example of argument dilution...

Published: Jun 05 , 2014
Author: Alan Smith

About 6 years ago my daughter then aged 8 decided that she would like to join her older brother at Karate lessons. I was delighted. So much so that I decided to join her at the adult class. Unlike my son, both she and I have kept it up, and last Friday she took her Black Belt first Dan grade which she achieved. I was utterly thrilled and very proud of the commitment, hard work and determination that it took...

Published: Jan 16 , 2014
Author: Stephen White

There are interminable lists of top negotiating dos and don’ts available on the internet, in books, and on training courses. They mainly contain pieces of sensible, if obvious, advice about how negotiators should conduct themselves. You may have read some of these lists, and you may even have been moved to try some of the tips. You certainly don’t need to see another one.

Published: Oct 31 , 2013
Author: Mike Freedman

Like most sales people I talk about value first and price last. This week was no exception. My prospective client was considering courses for the company’s purchasing managers. The meeting was going very well, and when the quotation was requested I announced the total price for our three-day negotiating skills course upon which my much-interested prospective client asked…"is that the cost per day?"

Published: Jul 09 , 2013
Author: Alan Smith

George North is a big man. Currently on tour in Australia with the British and Irish Lions, North stands at 6 feet 4 inches and weighs in at 240 lbs. That is over 17 stones in old money, as my mother would say. He is also only 21 years old and a prodigious rugby talent. In the first test he scored a phenomenal individual try and in the second a thunderous tackle that sent the Wallaby Israel Folau back several meters....

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DUPed

Two’s company; 27’s a crowd. It may be tricky negotiating with a single party, but when there are 27 divergent interests on the other side of the table it becomes even harder. That is just part of the challenge that the UK Government has in their Brexit…

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