Top 10 Negotiation Books


Whether you want to convince your children to eat more vegetables or understand how to resolve complex business disputes, you will need to learn how to effectively negotiate. Negotiating skills are critical to everyday life and contribute to successful business functions. Beyond merely convincing people, negotiation requires empathy, strategy, and several other important skills. This list of the 10 best negotiation books will expand upon those skills and help you develop your negotiation tactics. 

  1. Beyond Winning: Negotiating to Create Value in Deals and Disputes

“Conflict is inevitable, in both deals and disputes. Yet when clients call in the lawyers to haggle over who gets how much of the pie, traditional hard-bargaining tactics can lead to ruin. Too often, deals blow up, cases don’t settle, relationships fall apart, justice is delayed. Beyond Winning charts a way out of our current crisis of confidence in the legal system. It offers a fresh look at negotiation, aimed at helping lawyers turn disputes into deals, and deals into better deals, through practical, tough-minded problem-solving techniques.” (Mnookin, Robert H, Scott R. Peppet, and Andrew S. Tulumello. Beyond Winning: Negotiating to Create Value in Deals and Disputes. , 2000.)

  1. Getting Past No: Negotiating in Difficult Situations

“In Getting Past No, William Ury of Harvard Law School’s Program on Negotiation offers a proven breakthrough strategy for turning adversaries into negotiating partners. You’ll learn how to stay in control under pressure, defuse anger and hostility, find out what the other side really wants, counter dirty tricks, use power to bring the other side back to the table, and reach agreements that satisfies both sides’ needs.” (Ury William, Getting Past No: Negotiating in Difficult Situations, New York: Bantam Books, 1991)

  1. Negotiating the Impossible: How to Break Deadlocks and Resolve Ugly Conflicts (without Money or Muscle)

“As Malhotra reminds us, regardless of the context or which issues are on the table, negotiation is always, fundamentally, about human interaction. No matter how high the stakes or how protracted the dispute, the object of negotiation is to engage with other human beings in a way that leads to better understandings and agreements. The principles and strategies in this book will help you do this more effectively in every situation.” (Malhotra, Deepak. Negotiating the Impossible: How to Break Deadlocks and Resolve Ugly Conflicts (without Money or Muscle). Berrett-Koehler Publishers, 2016)

  1. Negotiation Genius: How to Overcome Obstacles and Achieve Brilliant Results at the Bargaining Table and Beyond

“Whether you’ve “seen it all” or are just starting out, Negotiation Genius will dramatically improve your negotiating skills and confidence. Drawing on decades of behavioral research plus the experience of thousands of business clients, the authors take the mystery out of preparing for and executing negotiations – whether they involve multimillion-dollar deals or improving your next salary offer.” (Malhotra, Deepak, and Max H. Bazerman. Negotiation Genius: How to Overcome Obstacles and Achieve Brilliant Results at the Bargaining Table and Beyond. Bantam Dell, 2008.)

  1. 3-D Negotiation: Powerful Tools to Change the Game in Your Most Important Deals

“Before showing up at a bargaining session, 3-D Negotiators ensure that the right parties have been approached, in the right sequence, to address the right interests, under the right expectations, and facing the right consequences of walking away if there is no deal. This new arsenal of moves away from the table often has the greatest impact on the negotiated outcome. Packed with practical steps and cases, 3-D Negotiation demonstrates how superior setup moves plus insightful deal designs can enable you to reach remarkable agreements at the table, unattainable by standard tactics.” (3-D Negotiation: Powerful Tools to Change the Game in Your Most Important Deals. Boston, Mass: Harvard Business School Press, 2006)

  1. The First Move: A Negotiator’s Companion

“Every day, you negotiate. Within families, in companies, in the public sphere, in international settings, you deal with projects, contracts, and conflicts. But do you do first things first? Do you prepare before you act? Do you listen before you speak? Do you acknowledge emotions before you problem-solve? Do you create value before you discuss pricing? If you are not born a good negotiator, you can become one. Beyond instinctive practices, this Companion proposes a negotiation method which is both a general philosophy and a set of specific techniques.” (Lempereur, Alain, Aurélien Colson, and Michele Pekar. The First Move: A Negotiator’s Companion. Hoboken, N.J.: Wiley, 2010.)

  1. Negotiating the Nonnegotiable: How to Resolve Your Most Emotionally Charged Conflicts

Negotiating the Nonnegotiable takes you on a journey into the heart and soul of conflict, providing unique insight into the emotional undercurrents that too often sweep us out to sea. With vivid stories of his closed-door sessions with warring political groups, disputing businesspeople, and families in crisis, Daniel Shapiro presents a universally applicable method to successfully navigate conflict.” (Shapiro, Daniel. Negotiating the Nonnegotiable: How to Resolve Your Most Emotionally Charged Conflicts. New York: Penguin Books, 2017.)

  1. The Book of Real-World Negotiations: Successful Strategies From Business, Government, and Daily Life

“This unique book can help you change your approach to negotiation by learning key strategies and techniques from actual cases. Through hard-to-find real-world examples, you will learn exactly how to effectively and productively negotiate. The Book of Real World Negotiations: Successful Strategies from Business, Government, and Daily Life shines a light on real-world negotiation examples and cases, rather than discussing hypothetical scenarios. It reveals what is possible through preparation, persistence, creativity, and taking a strategic approach to your negotiations.” (Weiss, Joshua N., and William Ury. The Book of Real-World Negotiations Successful Strategies from Business, Government, and Daily Life. Wiley, 2020.)

  1. Beyond Reason: Using Emotions as You Negotiate

“In Getting to Yes, renowned educator and negotiator Roger Fisher presented a universally applicable method for effectively negotiating personal and professional disputes. Building on his work as director of the Harvard Negotiation Project, Fisher now teams with Harvard psychologist Daniel Shapiro, an expert on the emotional dimension of negotiation and author of Negotiating the Nonnegotiable: How to Resolve Your Most Emotionally Charged Conflicts. In Beyond Reason, Fisher and Shapiro show readers how to use emotions to turn a disagreement-big or small, professional or personal-into an opportunity for mutual gain.” (Fisher, Roger and Daniel Shapiro. Beyond Reason: Using Emotions as You Negotiate. New York, NY: Viking Penguin, 2005)

  1. Negotiating: Moving from Conflict to Agreement

“Using everyday and business examples, authors Kevin W. Rockmann, Claus W. Langfred, and Matthew A. Cronin explain how to negotiate with an emphasis on when and why to use certain tactics and approaches. Focusing on the psychology of negotiation levers such as reciprocity, uncertainty, power, and alternatives, the text helps students understand all the ways they can negotiate to create value. Packed with practical advice, integrated coverage of ethics, cases, and role-playing exercises, this compelling new text takes an applied approach to negotiation, allowing students to gain confidence and experience as they practice honing their own negotiation skills.” (Rockmann, Kevin W., et al. Negotiation: Moving from Conflict to Agreement. SAGE Publications, Inc., 2019)

The most effective way to enhance your negotiation education is to continue reading books about negotiation theory and practice and focus on implementing what you learn. One of the biggest lessons that readers will glean from this list of top 10 negotiation books is that having good negotiation skills can be fundamental to achieving success. The best negotiations consider a wide range of factors, from timing to psychology, to strategy. If you are looking for some negotiation tips to help you prepare for your next case, check out our top 10 negotiation tips here.

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