Mindful Manipulation is a new, counterintuitive, value driven approach to negotiating. It is a twist on Teddy Roosevelt’s adage, “Speak softly and carry a big stick,” but applied to negotiating, not diplomacy. It is the thoughtful practice of understanding the Other’s perceptions and expectations, then influencing and shaping them through civil, consistent and purposeful behaviors to create advantageous negotiated results. Mindful means being aware, wary and thoughtful in a negotiation. Manipulation means to operate, influence or maneuver the negotiation process. The word manipulation has a negative and sometimes sinister undertone, but that is not intended here.
Mindful Manipulation is the caring, pensive and considerate art of shaping perceptions and expectations. It is not sinister or devious, but honest and at the core of the human condition when it comes to securing what you need. It is the pragmatic, humane and elegant methodology for achieving that balance of what and how. It’s far different than anything else you may have read about negotiating. It is an effective way to practice negotiations regardless of the intent of the Other.
Its’ principles will guide you to speak softly, while its’ practices are a big stick available should you need it. The strategy is if you mess with me, then I’ll mess with you. Practicing Mindful Manipulation ensures that you will get what you truly need regardless of the game that the Other plays.
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