Saturday, September 12, 2015

Negotiating: Greed & Ego vs. Honesty & Love

I've been a part of some negotiations recently and noticed something about negotiating that disturbs me.

Negotiations tend to be driven by greed or ego.

Greed: I want to sell the house for as much money as possible because I want more money. On the flip side: I want to buy this house for as little money as I can get away with because I want to keep more of the money I've earned. I deserve this value because of such and such reasons that I justify to myself. Blah blah blah. Both parties do it.

Ego: I want to win the transaction by not giving in too much to what the other person wants so that I can get more of what I want. I deserve to get what I want because of such and such reasons that I justify to myself. Blah blah blah. Both parties do it.

Please help me understand anything I may be missing.

If I was trying to negotiate from a position of pure honesty I realized I would be "taken advantage of" because the other negotiator likely did not share my love of honesty. One option is to honestly state up front what you believe to be the value of the house you're selling. But everyone knows that you can't do that because you have to say more than what you hope to get because you know the buyer will talk you down. That's the game.

To me, setting an asking price that's higher than what I think the house is worth is a form of dishonesty. It's playing a game that is driven by greed or ego.

I understand that negotiating/haggling/dickering has been a part of humanity forever, but I'm still struggling with the greed/ego part of it because I don't want my actions to be driven by greed or ego.

I see this in early dating relationships, too: Don't call her back for at least 3 days because you don't want her to know that you're actually interested in her.

This is all bullshit.

Why does our society reward those who play these games?

Of course it depends on your definition of "reward". Beyond a certain point, money should not be seen as a reward. Unfortunately it is by most Americans.

So where am I going with this? I guess I'm sharing a disgust with our society that doesn't feel right to me. You probably have things about our society that disgust you as well.

Thanks for listening. I choose the road of honesty and you are welcome to take advantage of me because that's the best I can do for myself right now. Your thoughtful comments are appreciated.