Never Split the Difference

by Chris Voss and Tahl Raz

ISBN: 0062407805
Never Split the Difference cover image

This book was not at all what I expected. I think, naively, I was expecting a book about negotiation to end up being very specific to hostage situations or M&A activity, and that it would be very much about establishing domenance over an “opponent”.

The reality was so far from this. It’s ultimately a book about empathy both for your counterpart in a negotiation, and how to encourage empathy from your counterpart.

The authors take you through some tough times and some of Chris’s biggest successes (and to some degree failures) in some very high tension negociations with lives at stake. He also tells you about when he bought a popular car for less than the sticker price… so some more relatable sitations.

The book is well structured, and easy to dip in to.

I found the book facinating as a facinating way to enhance how I think about interacting with those around me - not specifically when negociating, but just making sure others know they are being heard and building trust with them.

I believe that in my line of work, almost no situation is a zero-sum game, and that applying principles from this book can help unlock additional value for everyone - not me being able to “take more” etc.

Docked a point due to the later chapters starting to feel a bit arrogant in my view, but the key ideas from the book are extremely useful nevertheless.