Maurice A. Bercoff is a Bachelor of Law, PhD in Economics and a Statistics graduate; and fluent in four languages. He developed his systematic approach to negotiations in Harvard, Wharton Business School and the Kennedy School of Government.
He has more than thirty years of experience (in Europe and the USA) in labor conflicts, re-engineering schemes, acquisitions, and change management projects in culturally diverse companies; giving him sound knowledge of international, intercultural and social negotiation and relationships.
In 1993 he created Negotiators Associated. Through this company, he prepares teams for difficult negotiations for businesses, partnerships, industrial affairs, etc. Some of the companies he has worked with include: France Telecom, EDF-GDF, Schlumberger, Saint-Gobain, EADS-Airbus, Renault, etc…
He wrote L'Art de Négocier (The Art of Negotiating); which was published by Groupe Eyrolles: the first edition in May, 2004; and the second edition in 2007.
[...] Section two: the situation Everything said, no matter how much you prepare, each situation is unique and depends on many variables that are completely out of your control: emotions, feelings, moods, conflictive situations, competitive situations This is where the art begins. This is where the true negotiator is able to move around, to improvise, and to persuade. CHAPTER SIX: WHAT TYPE OF RELATIONSHIP DO YOU WANT? The type of relationship you will have with your counterpart will be settled in the first few minutes of the negotiation, and will be highly influenced be the possible cultural differences. [...]
[...] A way to avoid this possibility is to do small talk or to make the perimeter of the negotiation clear at the beginning. CHAPTER TWO: DO YOU KNOW YOUR INTERLOCUTORS? A negotiation takes place between two or more parties. Before being able to understand the other party, you must get to know them. The author makes it especially relevant for us to know their professional role and the possible limitations due to differences in culture/language. Professionally, we must know how they work; what competences they have, and which they lack; what role they play in their company and in the present decision-making process. [...]
[...] For him, negotiating is an art (although it has scientific aspects) because it incorporates individual affection and values, and also gives the opportunity to improvise, use creativeness and inspiration. Negotiation is a vital practice that we use in many aspects of our lives. It has two stages: preparation, before it takes place; and after the negotiation, when we analyze what was said, the gestures, the context. Only with experience a negotiator will be able to do the second part at the same time as he negotiates; something that the negotiator calls “real-time decoding”. [...]
[...] The negotiator should be aware of these unconscious signals. Then the negotiator should stop all stratagems or bad behavior at the beginning of the talks. Fourthly the negotiator should valorize the interlocutors and speak to them as persons and individuals but also as professionals to find a mix between feelings and objective interests. Finally the author advises the negotiator to make the first step to initiate the negotiation to show a good will to negotiate and to go beyond all the first perception and find the real goals. [...]
[...] You must stay aware of the alert sign that can show you when a conflict is arising. Then you must relativise the conflict by showing that you understand but that violence or aggression will solve nothing. The negotiators should find the roots of the problems and work on them. So conflicts should always be disarmed before they arise. Then it is important to avoid traps (such as bluffs) and to take the person in front of you to reasoning again . [...]
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