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"Cascade Manor" Case: The Concept of Claiming in Negotiations

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  • Published : April 14, 2005
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In the "Cascade Manor" negotiation, I played the role of co-chief city planner. I was part of a team, partnered with the other co-chief city planner and the city's financial director. It was our task to negotiate a deal with a development corporation who wanted to build a residential housing community to revitalize the historic district of our city. We devised a strategy on how we would open and negotiate on the issues. Using this strategy we were able to agree to a deal with the developers, and walk away with a sizeable amount of the "pie". This paper will look at how offering multiple package deals help the negotiator claim resources, and suggests ideas on how to develop an effective multiple offer strategy.

Thompson (2004) lists package deals and making simultaneous multiple offers as a good strategy for win-win negotiations. Constructing package deals avoids the mistake of single issue negotiation, which makes trade-offs difficult, impasse more likely, and "lure negotiators into compromise agreements" (Thompson, 2004). By developing a good package, a negotiator can also ensure that he/she claims resources while expanding the pie. For example, in our negotiation we decided that attaining the maximum number of local contractors was an important issue to us with regards to claiming. If we decided to negotiate that single issue, we would have definitely failed because we were bargaining for the maximum amount. If we asked for the maximum amount, the negotiated amount would end up being somewhere in between the maximum amount they were willing to concede and the minimum amount we were willing to accept. In order to achieve the maximum number of local contractors, we created a packaged offer that included allowing the developer to build to their maximum height. The height issue was of far less financial importance to the city, than use of local contractors. However we suspected that height was very important to the developers because it allowed for more...