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Negotiation techniques as possible shit-tests! (+ social dynamics feedback & exchange)

In hostage negotiations, Voss would use some of his negotiation techniques to see how open the kidnappers were to working with him to fix the situation (since he believes in collaborative frames).


Voss: "You really regret that this happened don't you?"

Based on their response, he would gather if he's dealing with a sociopath, a psychopath, and so on.

He also used these techniques in a mock negotiation to figure out if the person he was talking to would be a good fit for his social circle (or "circle of trust").


Voss: (label) "You seem like a really loyal person."

Based on their answer, Voss can pick up on whether or not this person is someone he wants to be friends with or even collaborate with in the future.

And who answers "No, I'm a real scumbag?"

John, it feels like you're being sarcastic.

My point is that I think it's not a smart strategy. I think you understood what I meant: if I ask you: "Are you a kind person?" I cannot use your answer to know if it is true or not. It seems obvious to me. Don't you think?

You just fell for it mate :).

"It feels like you're being sarcastic," is a label.

Your response explains your perspective, which helps me learn more about you.

Of course, I completely agree that not all labels where it's obvious what your answer should be will be effective in learning more about people. And, the one I shared in the first post in this thread may fall into that category.

On the other hand, I can imagine that if you're in an intimate, romantic relationship with someone and they're in the middle of pouring their heart out to you, they're in an emotionally vulnerable position. So, using a label like this while engaging in deep conversation can help you empathize with them while also learning more about them.

Make sense?

You just fell for it mate :).

"It feels like you're being sarcastic," is a label.

Ali, I really don't appreciate your games. I think you're not listening to what I'm saying and are just playing games. When I'm exchanging with you, I use honest communication. I expect the same from you as it is a basic form of respect on forums and in life. I don't feel the same coming from you.

It might feel that way, but I explained my point by showing you how it works in real-time.

If it offended you, please let me know. And, in the future, I'll explain these strategies with you differently.

You showed me nothing. I'm done here.


Yeah, that totally sounds like a shit-test.

And that, in my opinion, doesn't make it very good for friendships (or even negotiations).

Voss(label) "You seem like a really loyal person."

It would put me off quite a bit.

If it's a negotiation, loyalty isn't required.
and if it's a friendship, it feels like an unneeded game.

In negotiation, I'd have replied:

Voss(label) "You seem like a really loyal person."
Me: I'm not sure why you're saying that, there is no need for loyalty here, all that we need here is honesty. I'm an honest person, and I hope you are as well

I must say that while I think there is much value in Voss' "Never Split the Difference" I'm not a huge fan of Voss.
His marketing seems to be all around "former FBI hostage negotiator", as if having experience in extreme situations made you better able and prepared to handle more day-to-day negotiations, which, in my opinion, it doesn't.


Same as for the other thread.

If you guys both want a feedback on that exchange, let me know.

Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?

Yes, would love feedback on what I could have done better.