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2: Selection of Courses and Activities

Determining where and how you will spend your time is also a key to an enjoyable year. Though some schools have core curricula or limited course options at the beginning, when selecting professors and out of classroom activities it helps to develop some knowledge before classes begin as to what is likely to be an engaging path for you. In addition, you will most likely want to form a study group to work on homework and prepare for tests. 


 o      Try to find a second year student who will help you navigate the academic, social and professional challenges of the first year of business school. This method has proven a successful one for many first years. They attain good advice and register for classes with great professors, know which clubs or activities are best to be a part of, and have the valuable guidance along the way of a peer who has gone through it all before.

o      Be prepared to network. This is something to consider in the classroom, in forming your study group, and in selecting activities. Business school is in part a way to meet people who in the future will be in positions of power in the business world. So you will want to get to know your classmates, but as with getting to know people in most contexts, you will be most successful if your interactions are honest ones, if others do not get from you the sense that you are talking with them just to in the future contact them for a job. Also avoid being too dominant in the classroom. Though your professor may be impressed, your classmates may find such dominance less appealing. If networking doesn’t come easy, allow yourself to learn and accustom yourself to your new surroundings slowly and develop friendships naturally through the parties, lunches, and classes you will participate as business school begins.

Posted on January 12, 2009 by Manhattan Review

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Here is part 2 of a chapter from our new book, Negotiation and Decision Making. Our Turbocharge Your Career series has seven more books planned for publication. All of the eight books will be available on Amazon.com and in Barnes and Noble stores across the US. We will also host this class online or in-person at selected locations around the world. Email us at career@manhattanreview.com for more details.

5.1.5 Solving Their Problem

When you are researching, you will have to find out ways to solve the other side’s problem as well as your own.

Those include their values and the outcomes that they are looking for. Also discover some negatives in their business past.

1. All of those bits of information require asking them open-ended questions in the negotiation process. Ask things like “how will this help you” and “tell me more about that”.

Instead of getting an answer and moving on, keep asking to make sure you fully understand. That technique will also create a positive environment and show that you want to listen to their problems and needs.

2. In real life, often times there are no absolute distributive or integrative negotiations. Rather, they are a combination with varying degrees of each type. So you may always be able to find some ways to “enlarge the pie”:

- Gather as much information as possible
- Identify items of value
- Do not become competitive or force compromise. Compromising detracts from both sides
- Focus on the desired outcome for both sides

5.1.6 Let the Other Person Win

Identify Common Issues – Increase communication by showing how you are similar to the other person. It will increase trust and build a relationship

Maintain the Relationship – When something negative comes up, associate it with the terms of the deal and not the other person.

Show how the deal helps them – Be ready to prove that your deal will help their business. Be able to show them and not just tell them.

5.1.7 How to Derive Those Numbers

Many high-ranking business professionals quantify information and develop precise formulas to determine outcomes. If the other side does this, pay attention to the rationale and the formulas they have developed. Know how the other side reached their conclusions. Their method is likely to stay fixed, but the outcomes and numbers are not necessarily going to stay the same because they are more easily changed.

Rules to follow when trying to get at the final numbers:

- Know the guidelines, the goals and who is involved with the deal
- Strive for communication – Ask questions about items you understand
- Question numbers and assumptions – do not accept everything they give you
- Establish your uniqueness – Show why your product is better than the cheaper product and how it will help the other’s bottom line and business overall
- Focus on risks and benefits – Do not threaten or put pressure on the other side, but remind them of the risks of going with a competitor tactfully and through questioning rather than direct statements

5.1.8 Achieving Results

Several methods help to achieve the results you desire AND maintain or improve your relationship with the other party.

Find Objective Methods of Determining the Benefits of Solutions.
This will allow both parties to trust and value the terms to be agreed upon.

Concentrate on What You Want to Achieve, Not Where You Stand on an Issue.
This is a means of opening your mind to other options and modes of achievement. These would be less likely to automatically preclude the success of the other party.

Focus on Issues, Not Personality.
Avoid personal attacks. Your interest is in improving a relationship and achieving your desired results, not frustrating or offending the other party.

Posted on April 15, 2008 by Manhattan Review

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