Bartering requires creative problem solving and promotes enlightened self-interest. Today’s adversarial “monetary mind-set” often turns out to be ineffective at solving problems because it focuses on winners and losers. Brian C. Gunia asserts that a “bartering mind-set” promises everyone a good deal. By expanding the available number of partners, goods and services, participants can build resources together. Gunia 0ffers five steps for applying the bartering mind-set in negotiations. He says to determine your needs broadly and cultivate powerful partnerships to establish diverse options, enjoy less conflict and promote deals that satisfy all parties.
Preoccupation with money encourages seeing all negotiations through a “monetary mind-set.”
Negotiating and making deals is more complex than ever. And being preoccupied with money doesn’t make either step any easier. Money carries a bad psychological side effect: You see your needs in direct opposition to the needs of the person with whom you are negotiating. This can make you less caring, less generous and less fair.
The monetary mind-set is adversarial and views transactions in terms of winners and losers. It seldom guarantees the best outcome; compromises frequently fail to enrich either party. The monetary mind-set makes five assumptions:
- That you represent one side of the transaction as either the buyer or the seller.
- That you will interact with the opposing side as either the buyer or the seller.
- That you have one goal and the other side wants the opposite.
- That you can get a better deal only if the other party gets a worse deal.
- That you can compromise your way out of conflict.
These assumptions are common sense in easy transactions, such as purchasing gas, because...
Brian C. Gunia, PhD, is an associate professor at Johns Hopkins University’s Carey Business School. His research focuses on how people jeopardize their careers by acting unethically, negotiating ineffectually and sleeping poorly.