There are some very good tips in this article ( about salary negotiation: the importance of preparation, making sure you ask for more than what you want in a deal, and not bluffing about walking away unless you mean it. However, I would question two of the points made:

1. It’s not always a good idea to take the lazy option and “meet in the middle” on price. There’s an old story about two sisters negotiating over who gets the last orange in the bowl. They ended up splitting it in half, but they could have ended up doing a much more creative deal if they had explored each other’s needs, as one of them wanted the rind of the orange to bake a cake, and the other wanted the juice to make a drink.

Next time someone says to you “let’s just split the difference” try saying “let’s not”! They will have given away half of the difference between your two positions without getting anything back, putting you firmly on the front foot in the negotiation.

2. I would also ask whether it is important to “seem fair” when trying to negotiate a compromise. The problem with this can be that there is no objective standard of fairness, so everyone usually thinks they are being “fair” in a negotiation, whatever their position is.

If I say “let’s agree this outcome because it’s fair” this implies that I think that you are being “unfair”. You are unlikely to agree with that judgment and it may irritate you to hear me make that inference. So, sometimes it’s better to avoid references to what is “fair” or “reasonable” when you support your position, as the other side may well disagree with you and it is impossible justify your claim.

Suggested compromises are best presented on the basis that they will meet the “needs” on both sides. For example, try saying “I need this and you need that, so how about this as a proposal…?”.