In today’s society people are very sensitive to ethical conduct in business, and the reason is because we’ve been lost in a gray area where right and wrong are muddled behind corporate agendas. Bloomberg’s Businessweek’s article, Wall Streets’ Economic Crimes Against Humanity reveals just how lost in the gray we are. In this article, the authors define what led up to the mortgage crisis as a “…widespread abrogation of individual moral judgment.”
So how does an entire industry of professionals who are smart, dedicated, and most likely good individuals, allow for the financial ruin of millions of lives in the form of bankruptcies and loss of pensions? It comes down to the classic debate – are humans inherently good or evil?
Many of us enter into a negotiation with a sense of fear or intimidation. No one wants to get burned. Stereotypically, our culture has given us images of robotic business types in power suits winning the day with stealth negotiation techniques. The meek losers fade into the shadows with little but regret.
Those stereotypes tend to depict negotiation as a battlefield, complete with bloodshed and victors. Instead, successful negotiation is more like a party—everyone wants to collaborate and have a good time. It is an exchange that will ideally result in both sides coming away from the table feeling honored and satisfied.