Negotiation is like a spinning coin

A spinning coin represents a successful negotiation
Spinning coin represents a successful negotiation

Negotiation is a process used often at work or at home and can be solved by spinning rather than flipping it. Flipping a coin when an agreement cannot be reached is not always an option, nor is it the preferred way to resolve an issue. Furthermore, the outcome of only one winning is not sustainable if both parties are bound to abide by the resolution. The long-term impact of a successful negotiation will increase if both sides come out feeling they have gained from the agreement.

Fortunately a coin has three sides and not two! It is the edge that connects both sides and actually allows both parties to see all interests when it is spun on its edge. The edge is usually not as ornate as the sides but its purpose is not to be showy. What does the edge of your coin represent in your particular negotiation?

Focus on the edge of the coin and spend less time wishing for heads and not wanting tails or vice versa. You will only be disillusioned and disappointed if you are hoping to be the sole winner. A sustainable negotiation has neither a winner nor a loser. Although both sides are hoping to gain something, the aim is to keep the relationship in balance to prevent the coin from falling on one side.

When a coin is spun on its edge, one has the impression that the coin is in a perpetual state of heads and tails, with no predominant side showing. The end of a successful negotiation will feel the same. A spinning coin means both sides are equally represented at all times. A spinning coin, however, requires constant attention or else it will fall to a favored side. What will it take for you and the other stakeholder to keep the coin spinning so that the outcome from the negotiation may last?