Conflict is inevitable, in both deals and disputes. Yet when clients call in the lawyers to haggle over who gets how much of the pie, traditional hard-bargaining tactics can lead to ruin. Too often, deals blow up, cases don’t settle, relationships fall apart, justice is delayed. Beyond Winning charts a way out of our current crisis of confidence in the legal system. It offers a fresh look at negotiation, aimed at helping lawyers turn disputes into deals, and deals into better deals, through practical, tough-minded problem-solving techniques.
In this step-by-step guide to conflict resolution, the authors describe the many obstacles that can derail a legal negotiation, both behind the bargaining table with one’s own client and across the table with the other side. They offer clear, candid advice about ways lawyers can search for beneficial trades, enlarge the scope of interests, improve communication, minimize transaction costs, and leave both sides better off than before. But lawyers cannot do the job alone. People who hire lawyers must help change the game from conflict to collaboration. The entrepreneur structuring a joint venture, the plaintiff embroiled in a civil suit, the CEO negotiating an employment contract, the real estate developer concerned with environmental hazards, the parent considering a custody battle—clients who understand the pressures and incentives a lawyer faces can work more effectively within the legal system to promote their own best interests. Attorneys exhausted by the trench warfare of cases that drag on for years will find here a positive, proven approach to revitalizing their profession.
[Beyond Winning] rallies all of the [Harvard Negotiation Research Project’s] prior gems of wisdom on negotiation around the central theme of creating value. [The book] should be required reading for all lawyers and law students, for all mediators and judges. It is a book that every lawyer should ask his or her client to read (or reread) prior to commencing any important transaction or dispute, negotiation or mediation. Crafted in a reader-friendly style, the book energetically promotes an interdisciplinary approach to problem-solving in negotiation… In contrast to other experts’ advice to be reactive initially in a negotiation, the authors here encourage a proactive, ‘take charge’ approach to engaging negotiators across the table in problem-solving. This approach is not initially directed to the substance of the dispute or transaction, but rather to the nature and structure of the negotiation process that the parties might together design… This is a book for everyone who negotiates—a universe that includes all of us. Inevitably, it will move lawyers into a new paradigm of thinking about higher-quality solutions in negotiation and mediation, and about how to achieve the best possible results for their clients. It is bound to change the world of negotiation in this new millennium.
The practice of law has become more contentious and competitive, not less. The authors of [Beyond Winning]…advocate that parties [instead] practice ‘value creation’ (i.e., the attempt to ‘enlarge the pie’) so that both parties to a negotiation receive bigger returns… The book does an excellent job of breaking down relationships, players, tensions and organizations to lay bare the inner-workings of the actors in a negotiation and the situations they create. Because of its unique objective of educating attorneys and clients, Beyond Winning is a good addition to any library on negotiation.
Conventional negotiating strategy often requires adversarial positions, but the authors propose viewing negotiating as a problem-solving task… They explain that creating value is the key to successful negotiating. The goal should not be to win the biggest piece of the pie but to make the pie bigger!
Observing that today’s tough, adversarial legal negotiations preempt mutually beneficial problem solving between parties, Mnookin and his coauthors urge lawyers to adopt a proactive, optimistic and realistic mindset to transform their practices… [Although] aimed…at attorneys who want to serve clients’ broader needs better as well as to protect their interests, the authors’ practical, straightforward and jargon-free style makes this a valuable resource for anybody who is about to hire an attorney, file a lawsuit or sign a contract.
With its lively examples and its innovative framework for managing the tensions intrinsic to any negotiation, Beyond Winning is must reading for lawmakers as well as lawyers—for anyone, in fact, who is charged with resolving intractable disputes and forging lasting agreements.
On the cutting edge of negotiation literature, Beyond Winning is a spectacular integration of our contemporary understanding of negotiation, modern social science, and the legal context. This is an excellent book and is sure to become a must-read for lawyers, law students, and executives who deal with the legal process on a regular basis.
The authors provide specific, concrete strategies lawyers and their clients can employ to mitigate the tensions that make legal negotiation so difficult. They integrate theory and practice in ways that do justice to the complexity of each.
Much negotiation literature suffers from one of two problems. Either it is too theoretical to be of use to practitioners or it is simplistic, purporting to give advice to negotiators in cookbook form. Beyond Winning captures the most important theoretical economic and social science material and uses vivid examples to demonstrate techniques for using theoretical insights in practice. The mini-case histories and transcripts of portions of negotiations that appear throughout the book are especially valuable ways both to illustrate theory and to provide practical guidance for its application.
- 368 pages
- 6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches
- Belknap Press
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