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Identifying Positions, Investigating Interests

Identifying Positions, Investigating Interests

Understand the difference between positions and interests—both yours and the other parties—and learn about how you can find out more about the interest of your counterpart.


Negotiations require careful preparation. Experts suggest that, at a bare minimum, you should devote the same amount of time to your preparation as you believe the negotiation itself will take. For more complex negotiations, experts recommend setting aside double or triple the length of time you’ll spend at the table. The reason for these recommendations is simple: the better prepared you are, the more equipped you’ll be to anticipate and respond to anything the other side does or says, and...