Give and Take: The Complete Guide to Negotiating Strategies and Tactics


Give and Take is nothing less than an encyclopedia of negotiation -- for both business and personal life. Anyone who must negotiate can employ the techniques found here to great advantage -- whether the bargaining involves asking for a raise, hammering out a contract, selling goods and/or services, buying a house or a car, or resolving a conflict. These more than two hundred tactics and strategies -- arranged alphabetically -- represent the considerable knowledge and wisdom of Dr. Chester L. Karrass, the first ...
See more details below
Available through our Marketplace sellers.
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (76) from $1.99   
  • New (6) from $1.99   
  • Used (70) from $1.99   
Sort by
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Note: Marketplace items are not eligible for any coupons and promotions
Seller since 2014

Feedback rating:



New — never opened or used in original packaging.

Like New — packaging may have been opened. A "Like New" item is suitable to give as a gift.

Very Good — may have minor signs of wear on packaging but item works perfectly and has no damage.

Good — item is in good condition but packaging may have signs of shelf wear/aging or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Acceptable — item is in working order but may show signs of wear such as scratches or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Used — An item that has been opened and may show signs of wear. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Refurbished — A used item that has been renewed or updated and verified to be in proper working condition. Not necessarily completed by the original manufacturer.

Excellent Buy!!!

Ships from: Pleasant View, TN

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
Seller since 2005

Feedback rating:


Condition: New

Ships from: San Antonio, TX

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
Seller since 2014

Feedback rating:


Condition: New
100% satisfaction guaranteed. No Remainder Mark, No Damage. Ship twice daily.

Ships from: Plano, TX

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
Seller since 2005

Feedback rating:


Condition: New

Ships from: Greenwood, IN

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
Seller since 2005

Feedback rating:


Condition: New
New Quality Books...Because We Care-Shipped from Canada. Usually ships within 1-2 business days. If you buy this book from us, we will donate a book to a local school. We donate ... 10, 000+ books to local schools every year. If there are any problems, pleases ask us to resolve it amicably before leaving any feedback. Read more Show Less

Ships from: Ottawa, Canada

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
Seller since 2014

Feedback rating:


Condition: New
Brand new.

Ships from: acton, MA

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Sort by
Sending request ...


Give and Take is nothing less than an encyclopedia of negotiation -- for both business and personal life. Anyone who must negotiate can employ the techniques found here to great advantage -- whether the bargaining involves asking for a raise, hammering out a contract, selling goods and/or services, buying a house or a car, or resolving a conflict. These more than two hundred tactics and strategies -- arranged alphabetically -- represent the considerable knowledge and wisdom of Dr. Chester L. Karrass, the first and foremost modern student of negotiation. The Karrass organization gives almost one thousand seminars annually in North America, Europe, and Asia, making it the largest purveyor of negotiating training in the world. Forbes magazine describes the organization's client list as "a breed apart"; at General Electric, renowned for its in-house training programs, 90 percent of employees who took Karrass's course called it their most significant career training ever.

In Give and Take readers learn how to break a deadlock, handle objections, ask better questions, use time as a bargaining ally, and zero in on the other side's real goals. Readers also see the advantages and pitfalls of telephone negotiations and the vital need to set high aspirations. Not only that, Give and Take grapples with such emotional topics as how to handle irrational outbursts, how to deal with and deflect personal attacks (without derailing the negotiation), and how to win with kindness. In addition, the book warns against such devices as good cop/bad cop tactics, the bogey tactic, the hostage tactic, the escalation tactic, the "missing person" maneuver, phony offers, and spurious "take it or leave it" threats. Further points include the importance of planning ahead, gathering information, and making concessions that give away nothing. Give and Take is for anyone who wants to bring more power and knowledge to his or her everyday negotiations, both in business and in personal life. This is the one source for all the know-how needed.

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780887306068
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 7/28/1993
  • Edition description: REV
  • Pages: 320

Read an Excerpt

Acceptance Time

The idea of acceptance time is so simple that it is often overlooked. Yet, when understood, it has the power to make each of us more effective.

People need time to accept anything new or different. Both parties walk into a negotiating session with somewhat unrealistic goals. They start with all kinds of misconceptions and assumptions. Being human, they hope against hope that their goals will, for a change, be easily met. The process of negotiating is usually a rude awakening. The low price hoped for by the buyer begins to look impossible. The easy sale that the seller longs for eludes him or her. Wishes are converted into reality through the cold water of bargaining.

Can we expect the buyer or seller to adjust to these new and undesired realities immediately? Of course not. Resistance to change is universal. It takes time to get used to ideas that are foreign or unpleasant. We can even get used to the idea of death given a long enough period to do so. Acceptance time is as important in negotiation as it is in life.

The buyers need time to accept the thought that they will have to pay a higher price than planned. The sellers are not ready to retreat from their price in the first few minutes of negotiation. Both they and their organizations need adequate acceptance time. That is why the perceptive seller tells the buyer of a possible price increase long before it happens. It gives the buyer and his or her people time to reconcile themselves to the idea.

When you ask people to change new ideas for old, you are asking that they discard old friends. Right or wrong, they have grown accustomed andcommitted to them. Put yourself in their position. Isn't it logical that they will be more receptive to your viewpoint, given the time to adjust? The asians say, "time brings things by slow degrees." Leave room in your planning for the concept of acceptance time.

Achievement and aspiration level: is what you get related to what you want?

At one time or another, most of us have told our children, "if you aim higher, you'll come out better." We tend to subscribe to that idea in our daily lives. The crucial business question is, "if you aim higher in negotiation do you come out better?"

Two professors tried an experiment. They built a barricade between bargainers so that neither could see or hear the other. Demands and offers were passed under the table. Instructions to both were identical, with one exception: one was told he or she was expected to achieve a $7.50 settlement; the other a $2.50 settlement. The experiment was designed to favor neither party—that is, both had an equal chance to get $5. What happened in test after test? People who expected $7.50 got around $7.50, while those told to expect $2.50 got close to $2.50.

I tried a similar experiment, but the conditions were different. Where the professors' subjects were students, mine were professionals; where they limited communication, i created face-to-face encounters on a one-to-one or team-to-team basis. Where they induced an artificial level of aspiration, i let each person decide individually. My experiment verified that people with higher expectations got higher settlements. Those expecting less were willing to settle for less.

How people set and revise goals in life provides an insight into how they do so in negotiation. People fix targets for themselves even when they are unaware they are doing so. When we choose a neighborhood to live in, a fraternity, or even a church, we say something about our status goals. Business executives describe their goals by the people they mingle with and the kinds of people they hire as assistants. We are continually setting objectives in life, getting feedback, and revising goals up or down.

An individual's level of aspiration represents the intended performance goal. It is a reflection of how much he or she wants; that is, a standard that they set for themselves. It is not a wish, but a firm intention to perform that involves the individual's self-image. Failure to perform results in loss of self-respect. When people are asked, "what score would you like to get next time?" They are more unrealistic in setting goals than those who are asked, "what score do you expect to get next time?" In one case, self-image is involved; in the other, it is not. In the first case, there is less commitment to the score than in the second.

Aspiration level, risk taking, and success are related. In choosing goals, individuals are like gamblers laying a bet. They balance a need for success with its tangible and intangible rewards against the probability of failure and its possible costs. People cannot make this computation consciously. Instead, they do so unconsciously, based on their past history of success and failure in similar situations.

Aspirations rise and fall with the tide of success. Level of aspiration is the yardstick by which people take bets on their own performance. It is a roulette wheel in which an individual's biggest bankroll is at stake: self-respect. Goals are set in accordance with the risk a person is willing to take. People set targets in negotiation as they do in life. They change them as success or failure is experienced.

A negotiation is a full-circle feedback system. Goals are set by the buyer and seller. Then comes the feedback. Every demand, concession, threat, delay, fact, deadline, authority limit, and good-guy/bad-guy remark has an effect on each party's expectations. The "price" goes up and down in their heads with each word and new development.

In negotiation, people who set a higher target and commit themselves to it will do better than those willing to settle for less. There is a risk. People who aspire to more get more, but they also deadlock more. The trade-off is one that can be evaluated only by good judgment. Despite the risk, up your aspiration level.

Advance payments: watch out

No matter how much a subcontractor cries that he or she needs advance payments, i don't give any unless:

1. There are measurable guarantees that the funds will be used precisely for the purposes indicated.

2. There are firm and measurable performance milestones tied to the payments.

3. There are sufficient and measurable reserves held back at each milestone to assure that the next milestone and the total job will be performed.

Sometimes, despite my attitude against advance payments, i fail to follow my own rules. More often than not, when that happens, i get taken. But then, even at my age, there are at least a few dumb mistakes in me yet.


Those who control the agenda formulate the questions and time the decisions. In business as in diplomacy, the agenda represents an opportunity to gain and hold the initiative. It is the first test of purpose in a negotiation and sets the stage for what follows.

Diplomats fuss about the agenda. Not so businesspeople. They rarely give it much thought and thereby forfeit a good opportunity. I have seen multimillion-dollar negotiations in which the agenda discussions took only fifteen minutes. Neither party attached value to the matter, nor understood its significance.

It is a lot easier for buyers to control the agenda than sellers. Occasionally, a good salesperson can take the reins if the buyer is indifferent. Both should be aware of what an agenda can do to shape the outcome of a negotiation.

A good agenda can clarify or hide motives. It can establish rules that are fair to both or biased in one direction. It can keep talks on track or permit digressions. It can coordinate the discussion of an issue with moves away from the table. It can force a quick decision or permit a patient exploration of facts. The person who controls the agenda controls what will be said and, perhaps more important, what will not be said.

Always try to negotiate an agenda before talks begin. It will help you keep the initiative. The following guidelines are pertinent:

1. Don't accept the other person's agenda without thinking through the consequences.

2. Consider where and how issues can best be introduced.

3. Schedule the discussion of issues to give yourself time to think.

4. Study your opponents' proposed agenda for what it deliberately leaves out.

5. Be careful not to imply that your "must" demands are negotiable. You can show your resolve early by not permitting such items into the discussion.

An agenda is a plan for discussion. It is not a contract. If either party doesn't like the format after talks begin, they must have the courage to change it. Neither can afford to treat the matter lightly.

Agreements, understandings, and procedures: a big difference


Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Introduction xix
Acceptance Time 1
Achievement and Aspiration Level: Is What You Get Related to What You Want? 2
Advance Payments: Watch Out 4
Agenda 5
Agreements, Understandings, and Procedures: A Big Difference 6
Answering Questions: Tips for Better Answers 7
Answers That Don't Answer 9
Associates You Don't Need 10
Assumptions Are Not to Be Trusted 11
Authority Tactics: Countermeasures 12
Averages Are Always Negotiable 13
Before Negotiations Begin: A Money-Saving Idea 14
Big-Pot Tactic: Real and Straw Issues 15
Body Language: Is It a Put-on? 17
Bogey Tactic: This Is All I've Got 19
Bogey-Tactic Countermeasures for the Seller 21
Bogeys that a Salesperson Can Use 22
Booby Traps: Bluffing, Lying, and Poker Playing 23
Breaking an Impasse 25
Bribery 27
Buy Now--Negotiate Later 28
Call a Cactus 30
Call the Plumber 30
Car Dealers and Accountants 30
Catch-22: Dumb Is Smart and Smart Is Dumb 31
Caucus: When to Call One 32
Change of Pace in Tactics 33
Change-the-Negotiator Tactic 34
Cherry Picking: The Optimizer's Tactic 35
Closing the Deal: Eleven Ways That Work 36
Concessions: Dos and Don'ts 40
Concessions: The Ideal Concession Pattern 41
Concessions: What Seller Concedes Affects Buyer Demands 41
Concessions: When One Is More than Four 42
Concessions that Give Nothing Away 42
Confession Can Be Good for You 44
Credibility Has a Price 44
Deadlines: Why and How They Work 45
Deadlines That Get a Buyer to Buy 47
Deadlines That Get a Seller to Sell 48
Deadlock 49
Decision Makers 50
Decoy: Br'er Rabbit and the Briar Patch 51
Default Is an Unfair Tactic 52
Deliberate Errors 53
Demands and Offers 55
Emotions: How to Cope with Emotional Outbursts 56
Emotions: The Penalty for Losing Your Cool 57
End Runs: When It Becomes Necessary to Bypass Your Opponent 58
Escalating-Authority Tactics 59
Escalation 60
Escalation Countermeasures 63
Experts: The Use and Abuse Of 63
Face-Saving: The Big Hidden Issue 65
Fair and Reasonable: The Seductive Trap 67
Fait Accompli: The Deed Is Done 68
Family Associations Pay Off 71
Fatigue 73
Fine Food and Small Favors Can Influence Big Decisions 74
Form an Association with Yourself 75
Full Authority: The Built-in Trap 76
Funny Money Can Work for You 77
Get-Everybody-Involved Leverage 79
Good-Cop/Bad-Cop Tactics 81
Hard to Get 82
Hecklers 83
Holy War: Why We Need Our "Enemies" 84
Hostage Tactic 85
How to Put Yourself in the Other Person's Shoes 87
Iceberg Theory: When a Little Means a Lot 87
Ideal Negotiator: The Most Important Traits 88
Ignorance Can Work for You 89
Indirect Information Channels 90
Integrity 91
Kindness Can Win You Over 92
"Krunch" Tactics: You've Got to Do Better than That 93
Last and Final Offer 95
Last and Final Offer: Countermeasures 97
Limited Authority 98
Limited Authority: Limits I've Been Glad I Had 99
Limited Inspection 101
Listening: The Least Expensive Concession You Can Make 103
Long-term Versus Short-term Relationships: The Big Trade-off 105
Lost Memos, Notes, and Stolen Documents 106
Lowballing: The Attractive Offer that Turns Out Not So Attractive 107
Make Them an Offer They Can't Refuse 109
Make Them an Offer They Must Refuse 110
Making Strong Assertions: Unless You're Sure, You'd Better Say "I Reckon" 111
Maslow's Needs Theory 112
Mediator: A Key Role 113
Mediators Who Are Biased 114
Memos of Agreement: What to Watch Out For 116
Missing-Person Maneuver 118
Motivation in Negotiation: What the Other Side Really Wants 120
Moves and Wildcat-Walkout Tactics 121
Need to Be Liked: What a Good Negotiator Shouldn't Feel 122
Negotiation Grid: What Kind of Person Should You Hire? 123
Nibbling: If You Can't Get a Dinner, Get a Sandwich 124
Nibbling on a Cost Breakdown 126
"Nice People" and "Reliable Nice People" 127
90-10 Rule: How to Make It Work for You 128
No Deal Wanted: The Big Stall 129
Nonnegotiable Demands: Are They Negotiable? 130
Nonperformance: The Insurance-Claim Gimmick 132
Numbers That Mix Me Up 133
Objections: How to Handle Them 134
Off-the-Record Discussions 137
On Tangling with an Elephant 139
One-upmanship 139
Open-Door Policy: How Much Should a Buyer Know? 140
Outside Associates Increase Your Bargaining Power 141
Packaging Persuasive Ideas: Ways to Communicate Your Position 143
Patience: The Supertactic 145
"Peace-by-Piece" Tactic 146
Personal Attack: Is It Justified? 148
Persuasion: Thirteen Tips Worth Remembering 149
Phony Offers and What to Do About Them 150
Piecemeal Agreements Versus Lump-Sum Agreements 151
Power of Legitimacy: Signing the Lease--A Horror Story 153
Power of Simple Solutions 154
Power to the Buyer: Negotiating with a Seller Who Has No Competition 155
Power to the Seller: The Limits of Competition 158
Price Breakdowns: How Buyers Can Get Them 159
Price Breakdowns: How Sellers Can Avoid Giving Them 160
Price Comparisons: Can All Bids Be Apples? 160
Price Drops, Trial Balloons, and Rumor Leaks 162
Principle versus Principal 164
Private Eyes 164
Private--No Admittance: This Information Is None of Your Business 165
Probes a Seller Must Make Prior to Negotiation 166
Promises and Gotchas 167
Put Yourself in My Shoes 169
Questions: Obstacles to Good Questions 169
Questions: Some Sensible Dos and Don'ts to Improve Question-asking Ability 170
Questions: Various Types for Various Purposes 172
Quick Deals 178
Rate of Concession: Alternative Patterns 178
Reciprocity 181
Resist Like Water 181
Reverse Auction: How to Get the Seller to Offer the Most Work for the Least Money 182
Reverse-Auction Countermeasures 184
Rules of Negotiation: Ones to Watch Out For 185
Satisfaction: The Present Value of Future Satisfaction 186
Satisfaction: The Present Value of Future Dissatisfaction 188
Satisfaction and Concession: The Available Options 189
Scrambled Eggs: How Disorder Can Work Against You 190
Seating Arrangements 191
Selling Your Viewpoint 192
Settlement by Arbitration 193
Settlement Range: What It Is and Isn't 195
Sex in Negotiation 196
Shill 197
Shyster Tactics: The Something-for-Nothing Trap 198
Sit-in Psychologists: Can They Contribute? 199
Skepticism Pays 200
Smokescreens: Short-Range Fireworks 201
Snow Job 201
Sources of Good Information: Public and Private 202
Split the Difference: If Not in the Middle, Where Else? 204
Spying and Bugging: A Growing Reality in Business 205
Squeaky Wheels 208
"Starboard": When Knowing the Rules Doesn't Help 209
Statistics: The BS Factor 210
Status and Its Effects 211
Strange Case of $600 to $700: When Both Buyer and Seller Have Different Assumptions 212
Strikes and Wars: High-priced Forms of Negotiation 214
Sunk Cost: The Value of Wasted Effort 215
"Superkrunch": The High-Finance Tactic 216
Supersmokescreens: Long-Range Rockets 217
Surprises 218
Tactical Flexibility: What Works for One May Not Work for Another 220
Tactics and Ethics 221
Take-It-or-Leave-It: When Does It Make Sense? 222
Take-It-or-Leave-It Countermeasures 223
Taking Away What You Gave Up Yesterday 224
Telephone Negotiations: Common Mistakes People Make 225
Telephone Negotiations: Dos and Don'ts 226
Telephone Negotiations: When to Consider Them 227
Tension Relievers 228
Third-Party Inspection 230
Third-Party Intermediaries 231
Threat and How to Handle It 232
Time Talks 234
Treason Was Preferable to Discomfort 236
Truth in Negotiation: A Good Place to Start 237
Value: The Hidden Value of Things We Might Need Someday 238
Ways to Give Yourself Time to Think 239
What Is Something Worth? 240
"What-If" and "Would-You-Consider" Tactics: How to Handle Them 243
Where to Negotiate 244
Who Talks Too Much? 245
Word Commitments: An Important Source of Bargaining Power 247
Yelling, Bitching, and Screaming 248
Zero In: Ways to Find Out What a Buyer Will Pay and What a Seller Will Take 249
Dumb Mistakes I've Made at Least Once 252
Rate Yourself as a Negotiator 262
Index 277
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)