The #1 Best-Kept Secret About Negotiation / by Lewis Lin


One of the best kept secrets about negotiation:

  • Experienced negotiators consistently get more information.
  • Novice negotiators do not.

A great example of this is the reality TV show, Pawn Stars.

  • Experts, like Rick and Richard, consistently get all goods appraised by experts (unless they are purchasing goods where they are experts themselves).
  • Novices, like Corey and Chumlee, don't consistently get goods appraised by experts. As a result, they get scammed and purchase counterfeit goods.

Why do negotiators decline an opportunity to get more information about a deal? Here's why:

  • Overconfidence bias. Novice negotiators think: I'm an expert. I've done this millions of times. I don't need to get this appraised.
  • Impatience. Who has time to get this appraised? I'm busy. Or I might lose this hot deal.
  • Worried about sharing appraisal information with the customer. The last time I got it appraised, the customer used the information to make me pay MORE than what they were willing to sell it for BEFORE the appraisal.

Photo credit: Pawn Stars via Wikipedia