Product Management Book Series (Summary One)

A summary on Chris Voss book never split the difference

One of the best books I’ve read to build stronger communication skills is entitled Never Split the Difference. The author, Chris Voss is a former FBI hostage negotiator and is somewhat of an expert on interpersonal communication.  

Voss provides key insights, character traits, and habits that will enhance one’s ability to negotiate over anything or with anyone effectively. The following is a list of the key traits and skills necessary for effective negotiation. 

  • Empathy: Understanding the other person’s perspective and feelings is important. Such understanding is the key to effective negotiation.
  • Active Listening: It is crucial to pay close attention to what other people are saying and acknowledge their points of view. This is pivotal to building rapport and finding common ground. 
  • Mirroring: There is value in repeating another person’s words and sentiments. Mirroring is a technique that helps to build trust and extend empathy. 
  • Labeling: Giving voice to another person’s emotions can help to diffuse a tense situation and show that you can understand their perspective. 
  • Calibrated Questions: It is important to ask open-ended questions that cannot be answered with a simple “yes” or “no.”  Allowing for verbose answers provides insight into another person’s motivations and desires. 

The wonderful thing about these traits and skills is that they can be used in nearly all facets of communication. It is just as effective in a stressful professional situation as in a visit with friends. If you wish to build strong and effective interpersonal skills, I recommend reading this book. Your future successful self will thank you. 

By: Jorge A. Borge