To encourage you to think about the many everyday opportunities there are in which to negotiate, and to improve your negotiating skills, you are being asked to GO OUT AND NEGOTIATE. You can negotiate for anything you like – a hotel bill, a signing bonus, a piece of jewelry, anything. I encourage you to negotiate for something that is not usually negotiated. Also, you do not have to buy anything to complete this assignment. On the contrary, you may be on the sell side in the negotiation, or your negotiation may not involve a purchase at all.
There are only two rules. First, you are not allowed to resort to a plea of “Please help me out, this is for a class…”. You may not tell the person you are negotiating with that this is for a class project until the negotiation is completed (and then you can decide whether or not you want to tell them). Second, you must be willing (at some price, under some conditions) to acquire the item for which you are negotiating. Do not start a negotiation in which you would never want to come to agreement. You will not be evaluated on how successful the outcome is, but rather how well you planned the negotiation (using class concepts and strategic thinking) and how well you analyze what happened. The paper should contain a description of exactly what happened and what the outcome of the negotiation was. However, the majority of your paper should analyze the experience. Exemplary papers will do more than simply recount the details of the interaction. They will also discuss preparation and strategy and will critically analyze what happened and why. You should try and include all of the relevant strategic elements of the negotiation (e.g., issues, interests, priorities, BATNAs, aspirations, outside parties, constraints, etc.) in your paper.
Your grade for this paper will be based on the following criteria:
1) The depth of your analysis. Have you correctly employed key concepts to assess the strategic landscape of the negotiation? How well have you explicitly and specifically incorporated the course content and materials in to the paper? How well have you applied your learning from the course to your analysis of this case?
2) Creativity. How unique was the context? How creative was your strategy? How did you meet expected and unexpected challenges?
3) The quality of the story. Have you included all the relevant details? Is it interesting? Is it well written?
4) Self Reflection. Have you linked your experiences with your goals for the course, your strengths and weaknesses? What have you learned about your negotiating style and skills from this negotiation experience? What would you do differently in the future?
What if you try to negotiate and are not successful? Do not get discouraged! I would encourage you to try again though. If you have more than three unsuccessful attempts, then simply write about these experiences. You will not be penalized for writing about these negotiations. Often, we learn as much or more from negotiations that fail as from those that succeed.
The paper should be minimum 8 pages in length (double spaced, 12 point font)