relationship


Agents aren’t necessarily adversaries

CMA Associate Rebecca Stowe offers her advice in response to a recent query on a property purchase: Q. I’m trying to purchase a house, which has been advertised as “private sale” by a real estate agent. The price the vendor has specified seems ambitious, and as a purchaser, I’m keen to pay as low a price […]

Some reflections on a relational world view

In “The Promise of Mediation,” 2 the authors, Robert Baruch Bush and Joseph Folger, discuss, and ultimately advocate, a new organising framework for (western) society, referred to as the “Relational” world view. The purpose of this article is to explore the Relational vision, primarily through a comparison with the prevailing paradigm of Individualism.

How a cup of tea can improve your negotiations

Wouldn’t it be great if we could improve the way someone is feeling toward us before a negotiation, without them even knowing that we’re doing anything? It turns out that there is something we can do, and it could be as simple as offering a cup of tea. It may sound like an old fashioned way of solving […]

Should the workplace be an emotion-free zone?

“Leave your emotions at the door!” This has been the unspoken mantra of the corporate world for so long that it might as well be printed in the induction materials. For many years, I bought into this expectation. After spending five years training my mind in the hyper-rational disciplines of Science and Law, it made […]

Driving change: is principled negotiation the answer?

“Fair prices and minimal drama”: these were the words that caught my attention when I read The Age’s recent article on how a Harvard-based negotiation strategy helped the Geelong and Adelaide Football Clubs negotiate a complex player exchange. Senior executives from both clubs had recently completed short programs on negotiation at Harvard University and were sufficiently inspired that they put the theory into […]

Turnbull: Collaboration as a winning leadership strategy

Barely a week has passed since the latest Australian leadership spill, and it seems like the dust is settling faster than it has in the past. Perhaps these spills are becoming so commonplace that we barely raise an eyebrow anymore. Perhaps we all just want to get on with our lives. It’s easy to dismiss the change in leadership as a change that had […]

Don’t spit the dummy: how to respond to critical feedback

How do you manage your reaction to something that hits you when you’re least expecting it? I was once hit in the stomach with a basketball that I didn’t see coming. It knocked the wind right out of me, and I instinctively yelled: “I’m going to tell my mother on you!” In my defence, I was eight years old and […]

CPR: the key to soft skills (and saving boring accountants)

It was a scathing assessment. Would-be accountants might be good with numbers, but they lack the soft skills necessary to prosper in today’s business world. That was the parting shot fired by Peter Roebuck upon retiring as head of accounting at the University of NSW. According to an article in the Australian Financial Review, Roebuck said that “Poor […]

Personality: does it hold the key to influencing?

‘Personality is everything in art and poetry.’ So said Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, and we know intuitively that this is true. But what about influencing? What is the role of personality in the art and poetry of an influencing conversation? As a facilitator of CMA’s Influence in the Workplace workshop, I often hear this question. […]

Fixed positions, shaky ground

Negotiation skills training needn’t stop in the workplace. Tyla Locke offers some advice on how to manage conflict at home – read on! Q. I’ve been having trouble resolving an issue with the builder who built my house. The house has structural issues which have resulted in a leaking roof and damage to the walls […]