Call His Bluff

Description:  He started out so reasonable and collaborative — but now he’s threatening to pull out of the deal unless you give in to unreasonable demands.

A final line of defense is to simply call his bluff.  If he applies pressure, tries to manipulate you or lies about something – call him on it.  Then stand up and start packing to go.  One of two things will happen.  He may change his tune, acknowledge that he was taking his best shot and start negotiating honestly.  Or he may let you go.  Either way, you are better off than allowing him to continue playing you for a fool.

Intent:  This is an aggressive, risky response.  There’s a good chance that calling his bluff will damage or even destroy the relationship, so make sure you are really in a position to pull it off.  Don’t bluff about calling his bluff!  Once you get up from the table, it’s tough to return without losing face and undermining your position.  If, on the other hand, you are being bullied with offers that are worse than your bottom line then you really have nothing to lose.

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