Negotiation Skills - Research on Cross Cultural Competence

Term Paper, 2008

11 Pages, Grade: 2,3


Contents :

1. Introduction : Negotiation
1.1. Negotiation based on compromise
1.2. Negotiation based on synthesis
1.3. Negotiation based on synergy

2. Negotiation Styles

3. New creative approach

4. Business Negotiating process
4.1. Planning how to negotiate
4.2. Negotiating
4.3. Coming to an aggrement

5. Role of Culture in international Negotiations
5.1. Language
5.2. Nonverbale behaviours
5.3. Values
5.4. Thinking and decision making process

6. Conclusion

1. Introduction : Negotiation

Negotiation can be defined as the process of bargaining between two or more parties to reach a solution that is acceptable to all parties.

Negotiation is also a dialogue intended to resolve disputes, to produce an agreement upon courses of action, to bargain for individual or collective advantage, or to craft outcomes to satisfy various interests. It is the primary method of alternative dispute resolution.

Negotiation could be defined differently, it depends on the subject. Political negotiation, cultural negotiation, business negotiation etc. Negotiation occurs in government, legal proceedings, in personal situations and in everyday life. Casse and Deol identify three types of negotiation

1.1) negotiation based on compromise:

The negotiators can overcome problems and move forward faster. Disadvantage is however, those who have to give up something may get frustrated; this might lead to a lack of commitment to the final decision

1.2) negotiation based on synthesis (all ideas are taken into account)

The negotiators try to integrate all the ideas in the final agreement. This leads to motivation and commitment. Disadvantage is however; sometimes irrelevant elements are included in the decision that can make the outcome of the negotiation weaker and more questionable.

1.3) negotiation based on synergy (the result is greater than the sum of the parts)

The outcome of the negotiation is the creative product of the interaction. It is a ‘win-win’ situation. Disadvantage is however, this requires a lot of time as well as a high level of flexibility, and open minds. [1]

Due to diverse cultures and languages, there are many different things which are needed to be taken into consideration before negotiating. Some cultures will spend long time on building relations and getting to know the other partner while other cultures get down to business straight away. It’s different regarding many cirsumstances.

a) Monochronic Cultures - In monochronic cultures, time will be spent on setting time limits and may be on allotting time for items on the agenda. They do not value interruptions during the negotiation.

b) Low context cultures - In low context cultures, more information will be shared than in high context ones.

c) High power distance cultures - In high power distance cultures, only people who are in the high up in the hierarchy will be allowed to take dicisions. A classical example of this could be found in some villages in Africa and Asia where an elderly guy is the Chief of a village. He decides within the whole village what to do, how to tackle the situation or who will do what.

d) Collectivist cultures - In collevtivist culture, there will be a need for consensus from the whole team.[2]

These are just the few factors making the negotiation vary in each type of culture. In dissimilar cultures, negotiation is further complicated.

2. Negotiation Styles:

The review of negotiations reveals the style a negotiator utilizes is generally grouped in three types: competetive, collaborative and concession. The competetive style is also referred to as contending, distributive bargaining or claiming value. This negotiation style attemts to gain value at the expense of the other party and is reffered to as the ‘win-lose’ approach. The collaborative styles also referred to as problem solving, integrative bargaining and or creating value, attempts to reach aggrement through creating options that are conductive to achieving or maximizing the goals of both parties thus creating a ‘win-win’ situation. In the concession one party reduces their position to the gain of the other party. This is referred to as ‘lose-win’ style. Below is the illustration of all styles.

illustration not visible in this excerpt

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Figure1: Rubin J.,Pruitt D., Kim S., Social Conflict: Escalation, Stalemate, and Settlement, 2nd edition, S.196.

3. New creative approach :

The most famous negotiation parable involves an argument over an orange. The most abvious approach was to simply cut it in half, each person getting a fair share. But when the negotiators began talking to each other, exchanging information about their interests, a better solution to the problem became obvious. The person wanting the orange for juice for breakfast took the necessary part and the person wanting the rind for making marmalade took other part. Both sides ended up with more. This story became a story of creativity when both parties decide to cooperate in planting an orange tree or an orchard. The similar approach could be used in many different sectors and it had been used in the past. Japan has the most successful example. There is a deep fundamental question why the Japanese have been able to build such a successful society despite their lack of natural resources and relative isolation. While Japanese society does have its own obstacles to creativity - hierarchy and collectivism are two- they have developed a negotiation style that in many ways obviates such disadvantages. Indeed, the ten new rules for global negotiations advocated by Hernandez and Grahm nicely coincide with an approach that comes naturally to the Japanese:

1. Accept only creative outcomes
2. Understand cultures, especially your own.
3. Don’t just adjust to cultural differences, exploit them.
4. Gather intelligence and reconnioter the terrain.
5. Design the information flow and process of meetings.
6. Invest in personal relationships
7. Persuade with questions. Seek information and understanding.
8. Make no concessions until the end.
9. Use techniques of creativity
10. Continue creativity after negotiations.

4. Business negotiating process:

4.1) Planning how to negotiate:

Before we decide to negotiate, it is a good idea to prepare. What is it exactly that we want to negotiate? We have to set out our objectives (e.g. I want more time to pay off the loan). We have to take into account how it will benefit the other party by offering some sort of reward or incentive.

What is involved (money, sales, time, conditions, discounts, terms, etc)? We have to know our extremes: how much extra can we afford to give to settle an agreement? Although we are not aiming to give out the maximum, it is worth knowing so that we will not go out of our limits.

We have to know what our opposition is trying to achieve by their negotiation. This is useful information that could be used to our benefit and may well be used to reach a final agreement.


[1] Gibson 2009, Intercultural Business Communication, S 78. 1 Auflage,2.Druck 2008,CS Druck , Berlin

[2] Gibson 2009, Intercultural Business Communication, S 78. 1 Auflage,2.Druck 2008,CS Druck , Berlin

Excerpt out of 11 pages


Negotiation Skills - Research on Cross Cultural Competence
Cologne University of Applied Sciences
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Negotiation, Kulturelle Verhandlungen
Quote paper
Bikal Dhungel (Author), 2008, Negotiation Skills - Research on Cross Cultural Competence, Munich, GRIN Verlag,


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