Negotiation crucial to executive success

Compromising techniques can be used in many situations
By Robert Gagnon
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 07/12/2007

The word negotiation often brings to mind a formal setting with two sides facing off across a table to settle an issue, whether in business, collective bargaining or international diplomacy. For some HR professionals, especially in a unionized setting, the word can be fraught with trepidation and potential turmoil.

Jim Murray, the author of three best-selling books on negotiating, believes the same negotiating principles can be successfully used in situations as different as parent-child discussions, business meetings and explosive encounters in a war zone.

In 2001, Canada’s military asked Murray to design a training program to equip officers with the necessary skills to enable success in a variety of civil-military reconstruction efforts. The focus is now on negotiating challenges in places like Afghanistan and the Sudan. Although he had been offering his negotiating program since the early 1970s in a two-day format, the life-threatening consequences of this particular training necessitates five days of intensive residential study.