Still Friends

Description:   Suddenly, out of nowhere, your relationship or position with the counterparty is looking shaky.  Your only option is to accept the other’s side’s last offer and hope that the damage isn’t irreparable.

Maybe it was a simple misunderstanding, or it could have been a fundamental difference, but things spun out of control until it looked like all your hard work was for nothing.  In the end, however, your counterpart has given you one last chance to keep this negotiation alive — by making all the concessions and compromises you were determined to avoid.  This is like Good Cop / Bad Cop but with one person.  Very common when the counterparty is providing access to a valuable network, distribution channels, or government regulators.  Also

Intent:  Manipulate your emotions and play on your fear of destroying the relationship.  You’re supposed to be relieved — your relationship is intact, the opportunity still exists, the bureaucrats will approve.  Someone, somewhere is still willing to take your money.   You can relax.  But make no mistake — you’ve been warned.

Used in conjunction with End of the World, Walk Away,  or other high-pressure moves.

This is a common tactic when the relationship is important to you.  In the US, it’s considered a passive-aggressive power move, but in other cultures it comes up often.

Style:  Competitive – Avoiding.

Counter:  The main counter-tactic is to have other contacts — substitutes for your counterparty — already set up and waiting for your call.  (Remember — HAVING a counterparty is a valid Plan B, LOOKING for a counterparty is a challenging new business).

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