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  • Jharna Jagtiani

The Dance of Intuition: Unraveling Its Role in Successful Negotiation

In negotiations, intuition is a silent guide, enhancing emotional intelligence, aiding quick decisions, and reading dynamic landscapes.

While negotiation is often seen as a rational process, the subtle dance of intuition can play a pivotal role in steering discussions toward success. This article delves into the significance of intuition in negotiations, examining how it complements analytical reasoning. An Indian case study further illuminates the nuanced interplay of intuition in the negotiation landscape.

The Intersection of Intuition and Rationality:

  1. Reading Non-Verbal Cues: Intuition comes into play when deciphering non-verbal cues – the unspoken language of negotiations. Sensing body language, facial expressions, and tone can provide valuable insights into the emotional undercurrents of the negotiation.

  2. Emotional Intelligence: Intuition fuels emotional intelligence, allowing negotiators to perceive and manage their emotions and those of others. This heightened emotional awareness contributes to a more empathetic and effective negotiation approach.

  3. Quick Decision-Making: In fast-paced negotiations, intuition aids in quick decision-making. It acts as a rapid assessment tool, enabling negotiators to make swift choices based on gut feelings honed through experience.

Case Study: IPL Media Rights Auction (2017)

The auction of Indian Premier League (IPL) media rights in 2017 serves as a captivating case study showcasing the role of intuition in successful negotiations.

  1. Reading Market Dynamics: Bidders in the IPL media rights auction had to rely on intuition to read market dynamics. The ability to sense competitors' strategies and foresee market trends played a crucial role in formulating effective bidding strategies.

  2. Embracing Uncertainty: Intuition played a significant role in navigating uncertainty. With numerous variables at play, including changing consumer preferences and technological advancements, bidders had to rely on intuition to adapt to evolving circumstances during the auction.

  3. Trust and Relationship Building: The auction involved complex interactions and alliances. Intuition played a role in gauging the trustworthiness of potential partners and building relationships that could influence the outcome of the negotiations.

Navigating Uncharted Territories:

  1. Enhancing Analytical Reasoning: Intuition complements analytical reasoning, enhancing the overall decision-making process. While data and analysis provide a foundation, intuition acts as a navigational guide, offering insights that may not be immediately apparent through data alone.

  2. Cultivating Experience-Based Intuition: Seasoned negotiators often rely on experience-based intuition. Years of exposure to diverse negotiation scenarios contribute to an intuitive understanding of patterns, personalities, and potential outcomes.

  3. Risk Mitigation: Intuition aids in risk assessment and mitigation. The ability to sense potential pitfalls or red flags can prompt negotiators to adjust their approach, ultimately safeguarding the interests of all parties involved.


In the delicate art of negotiation, intuition serves as a silent partner, guiding negotiators through the complexities of human interactions and dynamic environments. The IPL media rights auction exemplifies how intuition, coupled with analytical reasoning, can lead to successful negotiations in uncharted territories. As negotiators learn to balance intuition with rationality, they unlock a powerful tool that transcends scripted strategies, contributing to the nuanced dance of successful negotiations.


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