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ISLAMIC MEDICAL EDUCATION RESOURCES-04

0711-Dead-Lock Negotiations

Background material by Professor Omar Hasan Kasule Sr. for Year 2 PPSD session on Wednesday 14th November 2007

1.0 DEADLOCK IS NATURAL

Deadlocked negotiations are natural. There are issues that are clearly stated by the Qur'an or the sunnah that are not negotiable. What is wrong is to deadlock on trivial inconsequential issues. Negotiations may become dead-locked on either procedural matters or substantial negotiation issues.

 

2.0 BOTH PARTIES DESIRE A DEADLOCK

There are situations in which one or both parties to a negotiation know that there is no common ground and that the negotiations will fail. They enter negotiations either under pressure from a third party or to explore any weaknesses in the opponent that could be exploited in a more aggressive interaction. Some parties enter into a negotiation to deliver an ultimatum, generally expected to be rejected but they may be pleasantly surprised by a submission.

 

3.0 LESSONS FROM DEADLOCKS

Even deadlocked negotiation are useful, you can learn valuable lessons from them that can help in later negotiations.

 

4.0 BARRIERS TO SUCCESSFUL NEGOTIATION:

The following are barriers to successful negotiations: a negative attitude to negotiations such as a win-lose stance, poor communication skills, lack of knowledge,  lack of confidence in negotiations,  fear of confrontation,  being emotional and not being objective,  being reactive,  treating the other party as adversaries who must lose, and aggressive behavior

 

5.0 CAUSES OF DEADLOCK:

A dead-lock may result from personal factors such as an inflated ego. It may be due to poor negotiation technic. There are some issues that are non-negotiable for one of the parties and introducing them into the negotiations rapidly leads to a deadlock.

 

6.0 ANTICIPATING AND PLANNING FOR DEADLOCK:

As a strategic negotiator you should never be surprised by a deadlock. You should have anticipated it from the beginning and should have planned a contingency strategy.

 

7.0 WHAT TO DO IN CASE OF DEADLOCK:

You must decide from the beginning whether you can afford to walk away from the negotiating table. If you can, you are in a very strong negotiating position. If you can not, never allow negotiations to proceed to a deadlock because you may then be forced to walk away from the negotiation table and you can not afford it, or you may reveal your handicap and weakness and be forced to make concessions you would have never made for the sake of saving the negotiations. If it is in your interests to continue the negotiations, devise ways and means of getting around a dead-lock. Stay calm and keep negotiating. You have to change the rules of the game or reframe issues. Consider all alternatives and look for options. Utilize maximum flexibility but never lose sight of the final goals and your permanent interests. Stick to objectivity. Stay calm. Avoid ego complications, yours and those of the other party.

Professor Omar Hasan Kasule, Sr. November, 2007