Controlling the Spectrum of Emotion

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Ultra-competitive negotiators seek to control you, your deal approach, your emotions, your social networks, and your negotiation plan trajectories. Social media and other data points show who we are, what we like, and how we think. In this technocracy, a little homework can add a lot of value. Once we know what the other party considers important, we can appeal to their emotion and choose the best approach to plant our ideas.


Consider the example of a fund-raiser who looked on social media and found that a potential donor posts many photographs of birds: “You are very compassionate and love the beauty of wildlife in all its vibrancy and color. The Norman Bird Sanctuary works hard to protect the diverse habitats of many beautiful bird species. Do you want to be part of keeping that alive with a modest donation of $1,000?”


Anytime an emotional appeal is made pause. Breathe. Then act. To handle this, know your requirements, truth, and negotiation plan trajectory. In the above example, the potential donor might respond with, “Thank you for recognizing what I hold dear, and you are correct. The Norman Bird Sanctuary does great work. I would be happy to contribute as I feel the mission deeply but I contribute in in many ways outside financial means.”

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