from Chapter Fifteen: Mining for Interests
Parties tend to focus on positions or “where we stand.” Positions or stances become rigid; parties remain locked in positional bargaining with little hope of a successful resolution. Disputants cling like wrestlers seeking an advantage, not daring to alter their stance, as the slightest imbalance will result in their being toppled. They appear frozen like statues. They can’t let go! The solution is to redirect the negotiation to focus on deeply-held interests.
As a visual metaphor, imagine a horizontal line: above the line, we have positions; below, we have interests. Positions reflect our stance—where we stand. Below the line are interests that motivate our positions: they explain why we assume a position. The mediator may ask, “What interests does this position reflect?” Or, “What needs are you trying to satisfy by holding this position?”
from Chapter Sixteen: Making Decisions
Research shows people tend to be risk averse. If they are given an opportunity to risk a small certain gain for the chance to obtain a large gain, people usually decline. They walk away satisfied with the smaller gain. If they are assured of a $1000 gain, they hold on to their gain rather than risk the $1000 on a chance they might receive $3000.