CNN.com reported today that just resumed “talks between North and South Korea collapsed” after “the North Korean delegation walked away from the negotiating table less than five hours after the second round of talks had begun.”
Why would your counterpart walk out? Usually for one or more of the following possible reasons:
1) To send a sincere signal that they have reached the end of the line;
2) To extract a concession by playing off your emotional fear of not reaching agreement; or
3) To send a signal that the issue under discussion is especially important.
So if your counterpart walks, take some time to analyze the situation. Which of the above is their most likely goal?
If they come back on their own, you’re probably better off. If they don’t, and your alternative doesn’t look good vis-à-vis their last offer, consider making a concession. While you may lose face, it’ll be better than losing the deal.
Do you have a walkout story to share? If so, we’d love to hear it.