The Harvard Law School Program On Negotiation describes a negotiation as a process of finding your counterparts’ interests and reconciling them with your own to achieve a specific outcome. Negotiated agreements happen through back-and-forth communication to reach a deal.

Power and Authority

Negotiation has a lot to do with power and authority. In situations and organizations where one person or a group holds all the power, terms may be dictated according to their desired outcome. Others may attempt to negotiate; however, unless they have something that those in control want, their ability to negotiate is likely limited. 

Good negotiation skills become important in more equitable environments or situations where all parties must collaborate or engage to achieve the desired outcome. In business, skilled negotiation can make the difference between a business thriving or a failing business.

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