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Generic E-Negotiations Framework: The Drawing Board in its Simplest Form

By Nicholas Harkiolakis

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A framework is like the blueprint of a building that guides the construction of the remaining details. In social sciences it is a conceptual structure of a social phenomenon such as entrepreneurship and negotiations to name a few. The more abstract and generic the framework the more diversity can afford in explaining reality. It’s like the laws of physics – the simpler the formula the stronger it is or the less exposed it becomes to external scrutiny.

The truth couldn’t be stronger in negotiations and especially e-negotiations. If one can consider the width and breadth of what we are negotiating it could include every single decision we make in our lives. From whether to take one route over another to save time, to speak or stay silent, to whether we will sign an email with just our first name or our full affiliation, and finally in our case to closing a business deal-it’s all about negotiating things we value.

So what can it be more natural than negotiating? A generic framework could help someone build awareness (as a first step) to how we should approach negotiating with others. A problem solving approach will take someone through the phases of intelligence and perception, followed by strategy and communication. This is more or less the rational approach to solving any kind of problem in sciences and everyday life (Figure 1). When an issue arises and registers in our senses, the first thing we do is to organize the various bits of information and correlate them with related pieces in our memory. Their affinity with our past will help us make sense of what they mean, plan our actions, and finally implement them. Based on the response we get, we repeat the process until we finally reach a satisfactory resolution or walk away. We then move to the next challenge and we go on in life trying to optimize our path. Efficiency and effectiveness shape our learning and guide our future approaches to problem solving and negotiations.

Figure 1

A Generic E-Negotiations framework: The drawing board in its simplest form by Nicholas Harkiolakis


Copyright © 2013 Nicholas Harkiolakis
Copyright ©   2013  The Negotiator Magazine
The Negotiator Magazine  August 2013