WHAT I’VE BEEN READING: Negotiation by Carrie Menkel-Meadow

This book has just been released. It’s part of a series of more than 700 “very short introductions” on pretty much any topic you can think of! The series aims to provide a stimulating and accessible introduction to people wanting to learn about a new subject.

While the subject of negotiation is by no means new to me, I still found this book a wonderful resource. Menkel-Meadow has a wonderful way of helping you to see a familiar topic in a new way. This book isn’t so much about models of negotiation, or a “how to” negotiate – rather it’s an almost philosophical look at the concept of negotiation; why we use it; in what contexts; the kinds of choices we might have to make before, during and after negotiating; challenging negotiations; ethical and legal issues; and the future of negotiation.

This book is a brilliant introduction for anyone new to negotiation. It would be a terrific prescribed text for university courses on negotiation, setting the foundations for later forays into processes and skills. It’s also, as I mentioned above, an excellent refresher for the more experienced negotiator; reminding us of the “why” behind the “how” of what we do. I found it an excellent tool for reflective practice conversations between experienced practitioners.

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