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  • Jharna Jagtiani

Mastering the Art of Staying Positive in Difficult Negotiations

Stay positive, win big! Learn how a positive attitude can drive successful results in challenging negotiations.

In the challenging world of negotiations, maintaining a positive attitude can make a significant difference in achieving favourable outcomes. This article explores effective strategies for staying positive during difficult negotiations and highlights the importance of a positive mindset in driving successful results.

Case Study: Overcoming Obstacles with Positivity

In a high-stakes negotiation between a startup and a potential investor, tensions escalated as both parties had conflicting demands and interests. The negotiation reached a critical point where it seemed like an impasse was inevitable. However, the startup founder, Jane, understood the significance of maintaining a positive attitude and used it as a powerful tool to navigate the situation.

  1. Focus on the Big Picture: Jane kept her focus on the long-term goals and the mutual benefits that could arise from a successful agreement. By reminding herself of the bigger picture, she avoided getting entangled in minor disagreements and remained optimistic about finding a win-win solution.

  2. Practice Emotional Regulation: During intense moments, Jane consciously regulated her emotions. She acknowledged her frustrations and concerns but didn't let them overpower her. Instead, she channelled her emotions into constructive energy and maintained a composed and positive demeanour throughout the negotiation.

  3. Seek Common Ground: Jane actively sought common ground with the other party. She recognized shared interests and emphasized them during discussions. By finding commonalities, she fostered a sense of collaboration and reduced tension, creating a more positive environment for productive negotiations.

  4. Adapt and Find Creative Solutions: Rather than getting stuck in rigid positions, Jane embraced flexibility and explored alternative solutions. She encouraged open dialogue and brainstorming, allowing for innovative ideas to emerge. By embracing creativity, she discovered unique solutions that addressed both parties' needs and infused the negotiation process with optimism.

  5. Practice Active Listening: Jane actively listened to the other party's concerns, needs, and perspectives. She empathized with their viewpoints and demonstrated genuine interest in understanding their position. This approach not only built rapport but also contributed to a more positive atmosphere, where both parties felt heard and valued.


Maintaining a positive attitude in difficult negotiations is a powerful tool that can lead to more successful outcomes. By focusing on the bigger picture, regulating emotions, seeking common ground, being adaptable, and practicing active listening, negotiators can navigate challenging situations with optimism and increase their chances of reaching favourable agreements. A positive mindset not only benefits the negotiation process but also strengthens relationships and paves the way for future collaborations.


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