40 minutes | Oct 25th 2020

497: The Way Into Difficult Conversations, with Kwame Christian

Kwame Christian: Negotiate Anything

Kwame Christian is the Director of the American Negotiation Institute and business lawyer at Carlile Patchen & Murphy. His popular TED talk is titled Finding Confidence in Conflict.

Today, he’s working extensively with organizations to help them improve their skills on negotiation and conflict resolution. Kwame hosts the top negotiation podcast, Negotiate Anything and is the author of the book Finding Confidence in Conflict: How to Negotiate Anything and Live Your Best Life*.

Key Points

Use the compassionate curiosity framework:

  1. Acknowledge and validate emotions
  2. Get curious with compassion
  3. Joint problem solving
  • If a difficult situation needs to be discussed, giving a heads up to the other party in advance helps them to work through the initial, emotional reaction and reset for a more productive conversation.
  • Separating conversations about the content or service being offered from the deal itself can be useful to focus energy in the right places at the right time. This is especially useful for creative folks or those who might be highly sensitive to negotiations.
  • When dealing with someone who is not behaving well, use the phrase “The problem is…” as a transition point that provides you more agency in the conversation.
Resources Mentioned Book Notes

Download my highlights from Finding Confidence in Conflict in PDF format (free membership required).

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