The best books to become a wicked good negotiator

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a native Bostonian and I have been working in the field of negotiation for over 25 years. I have been very fortunate to have been a member of the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School for all that time. As a result, I have had the privilege to work with some amazing colleagues and have been given the opportunity to engage in many fascinating negotiations in the international, governmental, corporate, and nonprofit worlds. I truly love the field because it has the potential to do so much good in the world and because it is exceedingly challenging. For me, the more I learn the more I want to know. That quest continues to this day…


I wrote...

The Book of Real-World Negotiations: Successful Strategies from Business, Government, and Daily Life

By Joshua N. Weiss,

Book cover of The Book of Real-World Negotiations: Successful Strategies from Business, Government, and Daily Life

What is my book about?

This unique book can help you change your approach to negotiation by learning key strategies and techniques from actual cases. The book shines a light on real- world negotiation examples and cases, rather than simply discussing frameworks and hypothetical scenarios. It reveals what is possible through preparation, persistence, creativity, and taking a strategic approach to your negotiations. Many of us enter negotiations with skepticism and without understanding how to truly negotiate well. Because we lack knowledge and confidence, we may abandon the negotiating process prematurely or agree to deals that leave value on the table.

Whether you're a student, instructor, or anyone who wants to negotiate successfully, you'll be able to carefully examine real-world negotiation situations that will show you how to achieve your objectives in the most challenging of circumstances.

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The books I picked & why

Book cover of Getting to Yes with Yourself: And Other Worthy Opponents

Joshua N. Weiss Why did I love this book?

I am recommending this book because Ury turns the mirror on negotiators and gets them to look at themselves and why they do what they do at the negotiating table. This is critically important because I believe half our problems in negotiation are with the other party and the other half are within us. Ury gets people to really take this very seriously and to look in a place most ignore.

By William Ury,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Getting to Yes with Yourself as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In his highly anticipated follow up to the bestselling "Getting to Yes: Negotiation Agreement Without Giving", Harvard University's world renowned negotiation expert William Ury provides the definitive guide to attaining success at work and at home.

Drawing upon decades of experience in some of the world's most challenging conflict areas - from million-dollar corporate mergers to high profile Middle Eastern struggles - Ury highlights a previously unexamined issue which affects us all, personally and professionally: the biggest obstacle to achieving what we want comes from our own self-destructive actions.

In his brilliant new book, Ury outlines practical strategies for dealing…


Book cover of Negotiating the Impossible: How to Break Deadlocks and Resolve Ugly Conflicts (Without Money or Muscle)

Joshua N. Weiss Why did I love this book?

I am recommending this book because Malhotra et al take on a series of very difficult negotiations that look like they are impossible to solve and they show you how it was done. The book is very practical and demonstrates to the reader that many negotiations can be solved with the right frame of mind, creativity, and persistence. 

By Deepak Malhotra,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Negotiating the Impossible as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Some negotiations are easy. Others are more difficult. And then there are situations that seem completely hopeless. Conflict is escalating, people are getting aggressive, and no one is willing to back down. And to top it off, you have little power or other resources to work with. Harvard professor and negotiation adviser Deepak Malhotra shows how to defuse even the most potentially explosive situations and to find success when things seem impossible.

Malhotra identifies three broad approaches for breaking deadlocks and resolving conflicts, and draws out scores of actionable lessons using behind-the-scenes stories of fascinating real-life negotiations, including drafting of…


Book cover of Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving in

Joshua N. Weiss Why did I love this book?

Getting To Yes is a seminal work in the field of negotiation and completely changed the landscape of negotiation forever. Prior to Getting To Yes, people felt very uncomfortable negotiating. As a result of the book, they now have an easy to use framework that allows them to be true to themselves and build better deals and relationships.

By Roger Fisher, William Ury, Bruce Patton

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Getting to Yes as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

__________________________
THE WORLD'S BESTSELLING GUIDE TO NEGOTIATION

Getting to Yes has been in print for over thirty years. This timeless classic has helped millions of people secure win-win agreements both at work and in their private lives. Founded on principles like:

* Don't bargain over positions

* Separate the people from the problem and

* Insist on objective criteria

Getting to Yes simplifies the whole negotiation process, offering a highly effective framework that will ensure success.


Book cover of Beyond Reason: Using Emotions as You Negotiate

Joshua N. Weiss Why did I love this book?

Prior to Beyond Reason, the conventional wisdom was to keep emotions out of negotiation. That, as Fisher and Shapiro showed us, was not possible. They discuss five core emotions that play a central role in negotiation and must not be ignored to achieve success.

By Roger Fisher, Daniel Shapiro,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Beyond Reason as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Whether you are negotiating a business contract or curfew with your teenager, emotions can get you in trouble. They also can help you get what you want. This book shows you how. Telling a negotiator 'Don't get emotional' is nonsense. We all have emotions of some kind - all the time - and these emotions deeply inform both what we want and how we go about getting it. In "Getting to Yes", master negotiator Roger Fisher helped readers understand the mechanics of everyday agreements and how to reach them while preserving respect and self-worth. Now, in "Beyond Reason", he and…


Book cover of The Essential Mary Parker Follett: Ideas We Need Today

Joshua N. Weiss Why did I love this book?

Mary Parker Follett was an intellectual pioneer in the early 20th Century. Her works informed many of today’s modern-day negotiation concepts. She did this in a world that was hardly welcoming to women. Her ground-breaking ideas focused on leadership, diversity, mediation, and negotiation.

By François Héon, Albie Davis, Jennifer Jones-Patulli , Sébastien Damart

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Essential Mary Parker Follett as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Essential Mary Parker Follett: Ideas We Need Today

The Essential Mary Parker Follett: Ideas We Need Today is a comprehensive selection of texts from early 20th-century intellectual pioneer Mary Parker Follett.

Her ground-breaking ideas on leadership, diversity, mediation, management and democracy remain impressively relevant in our modern world. For the first time, these ideas have been selected, organized, and structured by an international team into five topics that encompass her philosophy and works.

This book presents timeless thoughts on uniting, organizing, integrating, leading, and creating democracy – universal themes that are just as significant and applicable to our professional…


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Grand Old Unraveling: The Republican Party, Donald Trump, and the Rise of Authoritarianism

By John Kenneth White,

Book cover of Grand Old Unraveling: The Republican Party, Donald Trump, and the Rise of Authoritarianism

John Kenneth White Author Of Grand Old Unraveling: The Republican Party, Donald Trump, and the Rise of Authoritarianism

New book alert!

Why am I passionate about this?

Reading was a childhood passion of mine. My mother was a librarian and got me interested in reading early in life. When John F. Kennedy was running for president and after his assassination, I became intensely interested in politics. In addition to reading history and political biographies, I consumed newspapers and television news. It is this background that I have drawn upon over the decades that has added value to my research.

John's book list on who we are, how we’ve changed, and what gives us hope

What is my book about?

It didn’t begin with Donald Trump. When the Republican Party lost five straight presidential elections during the 1930s and 1940s, three things happened: (1) Republicans came to believe that presidential elections are rigged; (2) Conspiracy theories arose and were believed; and (3) The presidency was elevated to cult-like status.

Long before Trump, each of these phenomena grew in importance. The John Birch Society and McCarthyism became powerful forces; Dwight D. Eisenhower was the first “personal president” to rise above the party; and the development of what Harry Truman called “the big lie,” where outrageous falsehoods came to be believed. Trump follows a pattern that was long established within the Republican Party. This is an untold story that resonates powerfully in the present.

Grand Old Unraveling: The Republican Party, Donald Trump, and the Rise of Authoritarianism

By John Kenneth White,

What is this book about?

It didn't begin with Donald Trump. The unraveling of the Grand Old Party has been decades in the making. Since the time of FDR, the Republican Party has been home to conspiracy thinking, including a belief that lost elections were rigged. And when Republicans later won the White House, the party elevated their presidents to heroic status-a predisposition that eventually posed a threat to democracy. Building on his esteemed 2016 book, What Happened to the Republican Party?, John Kenneth White proposes to explain why this happened-not just the election of Trump but the authoritarian shift in the party as a…


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Interested in negotiation, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and Cuba?

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