The Pakistani Prunes Background. The name of the exercise was The Pakistani Prunes. The situation described a corporate entity in desperate need of a product up against a smaller company with the same sense of desperation. I was the negotiator for the corporate entity. The goal was to purchase the entire production of these trees for the completion of the company’s drug that will lower blood cholesterol levels. I know that I have to negotiate with the competitor, Dr.
Sanchez; however, I do not know his reasons for wanting the product. I also don’t know the amount of money that he has to negotiate with. One of my strongest skill sets is to communicate. I think that it is very important to talk through the issue. I know that I can’t go back to my company without this product, so, I’m going to do whatever is necessary to talk this person down. My opponent was Dr. Rubio Sanchez (Clint). He was pretty well prepared (considering it was the first assignment). Analysis
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I believe that the BATNA in this situation was the dollar amount that I had to negotiate with. My bottom line was to offer the best deal, no matter what. I never came clean about my bottom line. I didn’t ever give up my whole reason for needing the product. After discussing his needs for the product, we somehow figured out the exact thing that we needed from the product. We saw pretty quickly that we could both benefit from the product. I wasn’t clear of the other party’s BATNA. He did seem to play up the human side of his need.
He often stressed how this would help him to save lives. He wanted me to give the entire crop to him initially. Early in the negotiations we realized that we didn’t need the entire plant to accomplish our goals. My only strategy was to talk until I figured out how to win. I didn’t initially trust the other party because I was given preconceived notions about him being a ‘ruthless’ negotiator. I wasn’t sure whether or not there was an ulterior motive. I don’t recall any face saving behavior.
Post Negotiation Reflection I learned that effective negotiation requires clear communication. You also have to be willing to put yourself out there a little bit to find out what the other person knows. I did achieve my goal. I learned that I might actually do well in a situation of this nature. I felt great because we were the only team to do it correctly. We figured out that I needed the pulp and he needed the pit. So we determined that I would purchase the plant’s crop and sell the pit to him at a nominal cost.