Chris Voss: “Never Split the Difference” | Talks at Google

MAIRIN CHESNEY: Hello everyone. My name is Mairin Chesney. And welcome to this
Talks at Google event. For much of his
career, Chris Voss has been at the forefront
of negotiation technique. He was a member of the New
York City Joint Terrorist Task Force for 14 years and lead
crisis negotiator for the New York City division of
the FBI before becoming the FBI lead international
kidnapping negotiator. He currently teaches business
negotiation in the MBA programs at the University of Southern
California and Georgetown University as well as having
taught at Harvard University and guest lectured at
Northwestern University. He is the founder and CEO
of the Black Swan Group and author of the new book,
“Never Split the Difference: Negotiating As If Your
Life Depended On It.” Talks at Google is honored
to welcome him here today. CHRIS VOSS: Thank you very much. And I got to tell you,
with that introduction, it makes it sound like I
can’t keep a job, doesn’t it? [LAUGHTER] MAIRIN CHESNEY: So to begin,
you and I were talking earlier. And I was telling you
about how I read your book. And it is full of
incredibly practical tips and great stories. And I told you
about something that happened to me this morning. CHRIS VOSS: Right. MAIRIN CHESNEY: And in
preparing for this talk, I was going through all of my
notes, and all of the tickets, and making sure that
everything was in line. And I realized that
I had forgotten to request director’s
chairs for us to sit in. And so I sent out a quick e-mail
of oh, shoot, I’m so sorry. I forgot to request
these chairs. Is there any way that we can
get some chairs for the day? And the response was, no. We’re cleaning up from
I/O. You know, sorry, but we can’t get
them to you today. And one of the
lessons in the book is that no is not the
end of a conversation. It’s the beginning
of a conversation. And me before reading
this book would have said, oh, OK, I got a no. That must be the end. But I really did think of
the book and think, OK, no. No does not mean absolutely not. It means, what’s a
different approach? What the different
question that can be asked? And so I responded,
well, is there any way that I can go pick
them up somewhere. You know, I understand
you can’t drop them off. But can I go pick them up? To which I got a
response, actually, I was able to arrange
it so that they can be dropped off for you. And it was– it worked. And it was amazing. So yeah, that was just one of
the many, many topics that you highlight in this book. CHRIS VOSS: All right,
so first of all, thanks for getting me a chair. I appreciate that. Now the interesting
thing about that story, though, is two really
important points. First of all, there’s a lot
more space between yes and no than most of us realize. You know, sometimes
we get into sort of a binary, on/off,
yes/no sort of thing. And we don’t realize
how much space there really there if we
just give the other side a little bit of time to sort of
think, a moment, if you will. There’s some data out there that
indicates to us that a moment is just three seconds. And three seconds can be an
eternity for a mind process. So the other thing that’s
also really interesting about that, and I think
it’s one of the completely different approaches
we take in the book, is what happens after
the other side says no? Now early on in my career,
I came across a book that I still refer to all the
time called “Start With No” by a guy named Jim Camp. And Camp’s theory was, if
you make the other side feel free that they can
say no at any time, then it respects their autonomy. They’ll relax a little bit more. They’ll be more willing
to work with you just knowing that it’s OK to say no. So we decided to take
it one step further and see what happens when
someone actually says no. And since yes is protection–
or no, yes is commitment, and we don’t know what
we’ve gotten ourselves into, which is why we’re
scared to say yes, but no is protection–
that typically what we find is as soon
as somebody says no and if they feel protected,
they tend to relax. They center a little bit more. And they can think
more quickly, which is exactly what happened with you. You inadvertently
triggered a no. You remained very pleasant
in the way you talked to her. And we know that if we’re
pleasant to interact with, it actually helps the
other person think better. Because your mind
works up to 31% more effectively if you’re
in a positive frame of mind. So when you’re in a
positive frame of mind, it triggers it in somebody else. And it makes them smarter
just by smiling at them, having– you’ve got a
wonderful tone of voice. So she’s already making this
person smarter by the way she interacts with her. Your counterpart says no,
which she now sort of centers herself and triggers– you
give her a moment of time. And the next thing you know,
she’s strong ideas at you and working it out. And that’s finding that
space between yes and no. And many times,
it’s triggered when the other person
actually says no, because they feel protected. And they feel safe. And people are more likely
once they feel protected and safe to interact with you. So just in a few short
moments, you were brilliant. [LAUGHTER] MAIRIN CHESNEY: Thank you. So after that first
no, kind of in general, what’s the correct response? Earlier when we
were chatting, you said, well, you don’t
want to ask a– you don’t want to attack in any way. You don’t want to– CHRIS VOSS: Right, right. MAIRIN CHESNEY: So
what’s the right approach after that initial no? CHRIS VOSS: Well, first
of all, just to hesitate, give them a chance to think. Because you never
know what’s going through the other
person’s mind when you start talking with them. There’s probably
four or five things that have been going through
their mind throughout the day. So giving them a chance
to sort of focus on you is the other thing that no does. And I’ll give you another hint. Like, we never call
anybody on the phone and say, have you got a
few minutes to talk– ever. Because if you say
that to somebody, a whole bunch of things start
going through their mind– how long is a few minutes? Do I have a few minutes? Do I want to talk to you? Do I even like you? All these things go
through their mind. Whenever we call someone, we
say, is now a bad time to talk? And you get one of
two responses on that. The person will say no, no. It’s never a bad time to talk. What do you want to talk about? And they’re very focused. Or they’ll say yeah, as
a matter of fact it is. But I can talk at
two o’clock tomorrow. And you get a
scheduled time to talk. Now the follow-up to that,
if nothing good happens in that space that happens
after that, the next most important thing to do
is get the other person the say that’s right– not
you’re right, but that’s right. And you get a that’s
right when you summarize the situation from the
other person’s point of view. Don’t be afraid to summarize a
situation that sounds like it’s against your best interests. I mean, that’s
actually the key to it. And we’ve broken open a
number of negotiations. But it’s a summary
of the facts and how the other person sees them. And that’s right will
then move you forward in, like, ridiculously
phenomenal ways. It’s actually– there’s a
number of different reasons why we think that it works. One of the reasons
is– my co-writer Talh Raz is brilliant. And read anything he’s written–
Talh Raz– T-A-H-L R-A-Z. If he’s written it,
it’s well written, and it’s worth reading. But we were going through this. And he said, I think it
triggers a subtle epiphany. Because think of
the number of times when you’ve heard
someone on TV or you’ve seen a slogan that you
totally agreed with and your reaction
is, that’s right. You know, that’s right
is when you completely agree with something and you
think it’s the complete truth. So that’s a powerful thing
to get somebody to say. The other thing I
think it is is– we think it is is if
someone you’re talking to says that to you,
they’re telling you they feel empathy with you
at that brief moment. And there’s a difference
between empathy and sympathy. But when they feel
empathy from you, they feel connected with you. And they want to collaborate. So if you get a no, the very
next most important thing to try to get out of
somebody is that’s right. MAIRIN CHESNEY: And so it
sounds like the that’s right is similar to oh, you get it. CHRIS VOSS: Yeah, yeah. MAIRIN CHESNEY: And there are– CHRIS VOSS: Yep. MAIRIN CHESNEY:
There are a couple of times where in
different ways, you sort of highlight the
importance of your counterpart feeling like you get it, you
know, finding their religion and– CHRIS VOSS: Yes. MAIRIN CHESNEY: –you know,
triggering a that’s right. And so how is this
empathy and oh, you understand important
in a negotiation? CHRIS VOSS: You know,
that’s a great question. Because we believe the
world, the entire world breaks down into three basic
approaches to conflict. And it’s basically fight,
flight, or make friends. And each one, something
is more important to them than making the deal. The deal is secondary to each
one of those three types. And one particular
type that I happen to belong to– the assertive
type, the natural born assertives. You know, we think
of ourselves as being very direct and honest. It’s more important
that you actually understand where I’m coming
from than you agree with me. I want to know you
know what I mean. If you know completely what
my perspective is and I’m satisfied that
you’ve heard me out, then there’s a
pretty good chance that I’m going to
agree to your deal as long as you know
where I’m coming from. I mean, it’s sort
of like if you work for a boss who wasn’t doing
what you want him or her to do, well, if you understood– if
they knew that you knew where you were coming from,
they accepted everything that you said, you actually
wouldn’t have a problem if they didn’t follow your advice just
as long as you were 1,000% sure they knew where you
were coming from. So the other two
types, you know, what we call the accommodator,
friend-oriented person– they want to make sure that
we have a great relationship. If we don’t make
a deal, it’s fine. But as long as you know that
I like you and I feel you like me– that’s important. And then a third type
is the analytical. And they’re highly
pragmatic, try very hard to make
dispassionate decisions. As long as they
have the opportunity to share their reason for what
they want, they’re thinking, the results of their analysis,
then they’re happy also. So there are other
things more important than making a deal to all of us. MAIRIN CHESNEY: Do you
find that people usually fall pretty strongly into
one of these three camps? Or are some people
a combination of two or even a combination
of all three? CHRIS VOSS: Well, you end up–
the more experienced you get, you tend to pick up traits
from the other two types. Because to be a complete
negotiator or even a rainmaker, you need all three. You need to be able to
assert your best position. You need to get
along with people. And you need to be
able to analyze. So very few people are just like
stone cold one of the three. And then as we learn, we begin
to pick up the other types. So the assertives
and the analysts tend to pick up the
accommodators’ characteristics, because there’s some solid
data out there that indicates that you’re six times
more likely to make a deal with somebody you like. And as an assertive, I
want to know the better way to come to agreement. So if you enjoy
interacting with me, that increases good chances
that I’ll get what I want, I’m good with that. MAIRIN CHESNEY: And then
do you have to sort of– do you have to adapt your
technique depending on who you’re dealing with as well? CHRIS VOSS: Well, you
learn, and then you begin to understand that if you
have an impasse, if you have a disagreement, how
the other person might be looking at it in really
broad characteristics. Like for example, just
silence– dead silence– each one of those three
types looks at silence very differently. As an assertive,
if you’re quiet, I think that means you
want to hear more from me. And so I talk. Where if you’re an
analyst and you’re quiet, you just want to think. And I could completely
misinterpret that, you know? And you’re happy
when I go silent, because you’re like thank god,
he shut up so I can think. And then the accommodator,
who’s very relationship focused, when there’s
silence– well, the only time the
accommodator goes silent is when they’re mad. So if we’re talking and
you go silent on me, I’m afraid you’re mad at me. So when there’s an impasse,
when there’s a difference, when you having a
problem, it’s usually a result of the three types. MAIRIN CHESNEY: Mhm. CHRIS VOSS: My co-writer
Thal is highly analytical. He’s brilliant. I mean, he’s a brilliant guy. And I sent him an
e-mail once when we were working on the book. And there was some
wording that I wanted to have changed in
what we were working on. I wanted it written a
little bit differently. And a writer will say,
change whatever you want. But that’s their baby. You start changing words,
they don’t like that. So I sent him the e-mail. And I didn’t hear anything
from him like four, five days. And now I’m like, oh my
god, oh my god, you know? This has got to be bad. So I call him on a phone. And he’d been on
vacation with his family. And he could tell
that I was concerned. And he goes, what’s
with all the concern? You never get worried
about anything. Why are you worried? And I go, it’s four,
five days since we spoke, and I sent you this e-mail. And he said, oh, OK. Well, a lot of
people tell me going silent on them bothers
them too, so– I just interpreted it wrong. MAIRIN CHESNEY: You started
your negotiation career in hostage negotiation. Is that correct? CHRIS VOSS: Well, I started it
actually when I was about three trying to– MAIRIN CHESNEY: I
was going to say– CHRIS VOSS: –get out of
trouble with my parents. MAIRIN CHESNEY:
–professionally– [LAUGHTER] MAIRIN CHESNEY: Professionally. CHRIS VOSS: Professionally,
yes, technically. MAIRIN CHESNEY: And
so I was wondering if you might talk a little bit
about how you found hostage negotiation and
then how that’s led into the rest of your
career, you know, founding the Black Swan Group,
and sort of how negotiation has been a part of your life. CHRIS VOSS: Sure. Completely indirectly–
everything sort of fell out of the sky. I was on a SWAT
team with the FBI. I had a recurring
knee injury and then just decided before
the knee was completely shot while they could
still put it back together to try something different. And in the crisis response– I
always liked crisis response– we had hostage negotiators. And that sounded cool. I didn’t know what they did,
but how hard could it be? Talk to people, right? That can’t be hard. And so I decided I was
going to be a hostage– and I very definitely,
distinctly remember thinking, yeah, I’ll talk to terrorists. I could do that. So I went to the head
of the New York Office team, a woman named Amy,
phenomenal, tough, New York agent. And she said, do you
got any experience? I was like, no. Do you have any training? No. Do you have any
education in the are? No. Do you have any
background whatsoever in this that would make
you a good negotiator? I was like, no. She was like, go away. I’m like, come on. She says, no. Go away. Everybody wants to be
a hostage negotiator. Everybody wants to do it. No, go away. And I said, there’s got to
be something I could do. And she said, there is. Go volunteer at a suicide
hotline– which I did. I recontacted Amy
recently, because I wanted to put the story in the book. And she said, you
know, I had to have told 1,000 people to
volunteer at suicide hotlines. And two people did. And you were one of them. You know, one of the
things that I learned was ask the right person. Do what they tell you to do. You got to ask the right person. But be willing to do it. And so I volunteered
at the hotline. I came back five,
six months later. And I said, yeah, I’ve
been volunteering. She said, you’re kidding me. She said, I tell
everybody to do that. Nobody does it. Where are you volunteering? I told her it was
a suicide hotline. It was founded by
Norman Vincent Peale, “The Power of Positive
Thinking” guy in New York. She says, that’s where
I volunteered too. So I was the only one that
did what I was told to do. She moved me past
five other people. I got the next training slot. I went down to the FBI’s crisis
hostage negotiation school. It was a phenomenal,
phenomenal experience. It was almost moving–
and then came back and was lucky enough– not
terribly long after I got back there was a bank robbery with
hostages in Brooklyn, which is actually a very rare event. They happen in the movies– they
happen on TV every other week. In the real life, it happens
in the entire country about once every 20 years. And we showed up. And it was a great operation. The first bank
robber to surrender surrendered to me personally. So it went well. We got everybody out. And then I started to
teach that incident and tell everybody
how it went and found that I liked teaching. And then one thing
led to another. And the next thing I knew,
I’m sitting here in Google. MAIRIN CHESNEY: I
wonder if you also might talk about the Black
Swan Group a little bit and what you do there. CHRIS VOSS: While I was
still with the Bureau, I talked my way into Harvard
Law School’s negotiation course. I’m the only agent
that ever did that. And while I was
there collaborating with my now
colleagues at Harvard, we decided we were
doing the same thing only– same techniques,
different stakes. Basically, that means
I had better stories. And then after that, I
decided that this was an area that hostage negotiation
does apply to business and personal negotiations. Did very well with it there. And I was encouraged
by my colleagues there, Sheila Heen, John Richardson,
Doug Stone– phenomenal people. Have been very supportive of me
ever since I came across them– very good friends to this day. And so I just decided it
would be something new to do. Because most of my career I’ve
liked going in new directions, trying stuff that other
people hadn’t tried. So about the time
I retired, which was in 2007, which I know
already seems like a long time ago, there was a book out
called “The Black Swan” and it was about
very small, little, innocuous things that
had massive impacts. And that’s the whole
design of these skills. I mean, these skills,
even if the other guy knows that you’re
negotiating with them, they’re still OK with it. It’s very subtle. One of the cases I
talk about in the book, it was a very long kidnapping
in the Philippines. And ultimately one
of the turning points was getting the terrorists to
say that’s right on the phone– changed everything. There was a $10 million
ransom demand on the table. It went from $10 million to
zero in one conversation– space of about five minutes. It had been going
on for a while. And our negotiator got the
bad guy to say that’s right. And this was a bad, bad
guy– murdering, raping, head chopping bad guy. Got him to say that’s right. And it changed everything. So a couple of weeks
after that case was over, I was back in the
Philippines– [COUGHING] excuse me– on another case. And the negotiator
that I was coaching is a phenomenal, patriotic,
wonderful human being, guy named Benji. He says, hey, you’re never
going to guess who called me on the phone two weeks ago. So I was like, I don’t know. And he said, it was our
terrorist, bad guy name Sebiah. He said, Sebiah called me. Really? What did he say? Because he didn’t
know who Benji was. He just knew Benji had
to be the government military cop, some
high ranking official, but didn’t know who he was. He said, hey, have
you been promoted yet? I don’t know what you
said to me on the phone. I was going to kill Jeffery. You kept me from doing it. They should promote you. He hangs up. See, even when they know,
they’re still OK with it. And that was the whole
approach to negotiation. If someone will deal
with you and they won’t feel worse as a result
of it– most people I know, if they got a negotiation story,
they’ll be like, oh, yeah. You know, I had these
guys over a barrel. Well, I really hammered them. You know, there’s
nothing they could do. Well, the problem with
that kind of an approach is if you hammer somebody
in a negotiation, they’re going to wait for
the rest of their life to pay you back. And you don’t hammer people
that you never see again. There’s no such
thing as a one-off. They’re going to be people
that stay in your world one way or another, either
your day to day life or they will see you again. So you want to
negotiate successfully with people where afterwards
they call you up on the phone and they say, nice job. Nice job. I’d talk to you again– which
is exactly what happened in the Philippines. MAIRIN CHESNEY: You do
make the point in this book that your counterpart is also
your partner, which I thought was an interesting
point in a negotiation, that you’re not necessarily
going head to head, you’re trying to work
towards a conclusion. But you also make the
point that compromise is a little bit of a dirty
word sometimes in negotiation. CHRIS VOSS: It’s
a horrible word. And I hope they don’t bleep
that out on the tape, right? You said compromise. MAIRIN CHESNEY: So
what about compromise– what about do you think
involves working together? And then what about
compromise is so negative? CHRIS VOSS: You
know, and there’s a difference between
a high-value trade and compromise. Compromise, splitting the
difference, meeting half way, it’s usually kind of–
I’m sorry, but is usually kind of a lazy approach. And you leave
money on the table. You leave better outcomes on
the table when you compromise or you meet in the middle. You know, I like
to say, never be so sure of what you want that
you wouldn’t take something better. And so you want to interact with
someone– because the adversary is the situation. If you’re talking to
someone, actually you both have a problem that the
two of you talking together will likely solve. And even if it’s what’s the
most effective high-value trade? What can I give
you that’s really valuable to you that might be
fairly easy for me to give? I did a talk for the
Memphis Dispute Resolution for the Memphis Bar Association
a number of years ago. They were putting
out a magazine. They had to put somebody on
the cover of the magazine. They said, we’ll
put your picture on the cover of the magazine. Getting my picture on the
cover of a magazine that gets some distribution is
extremely valuable to me. It’s something very
hard for me to get that I don’t get on a
regular basis, something they got anyway that they’ve
got to do every month. So that’s a perfect definition
of a high-value trade. And the idea was they wanted
some training on negotiation. And they would to
hear somebody who came in from a
different point of view and some stuff that’s
fairly easy to understand. I mean, I’ve had a
lot of people tell me that the ideas are digestible. They’re easy to apply. They’re not hard to figure out. You know, everything is designed
to be very user-friendly, that you can figure it
out, and you can use, and you start making a
difference right away. So yeah, the adversary
is the situation. The person you’re
talking to, they might feel like that they’ve
got to be your adversary. And you can get them out of that
eventually with enough time. People are really
far more defensive than they are attacking. But the adversary
is the situation, so I got to partner
up with this person. So I’m going to
engage in behaviors that’s going to make you tend
to want to collaborate with me. And if we get into some really
serious hard bargaining, I can do that too. You know, I can hold
a really strong line. But ideally, you’re
still going to feel good about the entire interaction. MAIRIN CHESNEY: Hostage takers
and kidnappers are crazy. So there’s no way that
those same techniques are going to work on– CHRIS VOSS: Right. MAIRIN CHESNEY: –you
know, sane people. CHRIS VOSS: You know,
but yeah, the perception is that hostage
takers are crazy. And they’re not. I mean, everybody has patterns. Everybody is driven
by emotions, you know? Now that there’s much
more of a recognition of emotional
intelligence, it’s not that hard to make that case. But if we were at a business
meeting and I were to say, it sounds like you’re emotional
about this, that still would be an insult. But
if I were to say, it sounds like you’re
passionate about this. You’d be like, that’s right. MAIRIN CHESNEY: Yes, I am. [LAUGHTER] CHRIS VOSS: You
know, that’s right. That’s right, remember? So what’s the
passion and emotions. I don’t know. It’s a matter of terminology. And then also, we were talking
about Danny Kahneman’s book, “Thinking Fast and Slow.” There’s more and
more data out there that indicates there’s
an emotional component to every decision we make,
each and every decision. We make our mind up based
on what we care about. Therefore what you care
about is an emotion, how you feel about things. So let’s start with
the idea that we’re emotional to begin with. A hostage taker, if
he’s upset, is just more of himself or herself. They’re not different, they’re
just more themselves intensely. So hostage negotiation is
a set of tools and skills that can deal with people
in very intense emotions. They’re equally effective when
the emotions are less intense. And the flipside
is, half the time we act like things are the
end of the world anyway. I mean, anybody that’s
had trouble getting to sleep at night
means you were tossing and turning over something
that was bothering you. It bothered you enough so that
you couldn’t get to sleep. Anybody that’s ever
felt stress, you’ve just taking yourself
hostage because you’re worried about losing something. So when we start
running it backward, then actually there’s some
emotional wiring in everything that happens. So let’s start from the
premise to begin with that let’s have some tools
that work really well that are emotional
intelligence tools. You know, there’s still a very
intense drive to be rational. MAIRIN CHESNEY: Mhm. CHRIS VOSS: You know,
“Getting to Yes,” which is a fundamentally,
phenomenally sound book, but it really is
based on a drive to become rational or
even the recognition says, separate a person’s positions
from their interests. OK, wow. That sounds very rational. Why don’t you tell me why
you want what you want? Well, most people think if
I tell you why I want it, then you’ve just got
all the power over me. You’ve just gotten at my
deepest, darkest secrets. Or I’ve revealed
all my weaknesses, and I’ve revealed all
my vulnerabilities. So that as an idea
just doesn’t work. You know, tell me
why you want this. Oh, because I
can’t pay my bills. Oh, you know, then I’ve got
leverage– quote leverage. And most of the books
that have come out have been along this
drive for rationality. How can we approach this in this
methodical, pragmatic, rational approach to negotiation? You know, more and more comes
out in different degrees in other ideas– again, Jim
Camp’s book “Start With No,” it’s still got a
phenomenal chapter about open-ended questions. And it’s a completely
different approach. And it’s written from a
layman’s point of view. His philosophy is
a combination– he was a football coach. He was a fighter pilot
in the Air Force. And he was a salesman. So it’s got all that kind of
terminology mixed in together, which makes it entertaining. Bob Mnookin, the head of
the program on negotiation– the first story is me
negotiating with him in a simulated
kidnapping negotiation. His book “Beyond Winning” has
still got a fantastic chapter on empathy, the tension between
empathy and assertiveness. I still assign it, and I still
review it every now and then. And my Harvard
brothers and sisters are now very much
more recognizing that empathy is the tool for
negotiation effectiveness. And in my book, we call that
actual tactical empathy, understanding what we can
do with someone’s emotions and help sort of frame
their decision making. MAIRIN CHESNEY: You
highlight in here that there are these
unknown unknowns that really can be the answer to
finalizing negotiation and to figuring out what it
is that both of you want. And so I was
wondering if you could talk about finding these
unknown unknowns, what it means to be an unknown unknown,
and how we become better at it really tracking those
down in a negotiation. CHRIS VOSS: Right, so
there’s two kinds of pieces of information that
the other side has that are really important to you. It’s the stuff that they know is
important to you and the stuff that they have no idea
it’s important, but it is. And that’s why detecting
deception is not that helpful. Because detecting deception
in an interaction, you only know to cover up
what you know is important. And I got to trigger a lot
more conversation with you to get the sort of
accidental stuff. Now the other thing
is that there’s never a negotiation that anybody
is ever in when they’re not holding cards, if you
will, if you’re not hiding pieces of information. There will never come a time
when you’re in a negotiation that you don’t have proprietary
important information to you that you’re worried about
letting the other side have– ever. So if that’s true for you, it’s
also true for the other side. So here’s two people
holding pieces of information that they’re
not showing the other side, they know the other
side doesn’t have. And the unknown unknowns
are kind of when those two things overlap. Because I don’t know
what you’re hiding, and you don’t know
what I’m hiding, there’s going to be a
lot of stuff in the space there that could be huge if
we could just figure it out. Some of it might be just
why you want what you want, which again, never be so sure of
what you want that you wouldn’t take something better. One of my students, a male,
is negotiating with his wife over a Christmas tree. Very practical guy, practical
guy– wants an artificial tree. Lots of practical reasons
for an artificial tree. Doesn’t catch on fire. You buy it once. Never have to– you
know, all the reasons. And he can’t understand
why she won’t go along with having the artificial tree. It makes so much sense. And so sometimes it’s like,
well, why is this person crazy? Where are they coming from? And he searched his mind a
little bit and thought, well, the only thing
that could possibly be driving her was, you know,
maybe something from when she was a kid. So he said to her– he used
the tool we call label. And he just labeled it. And he said, it seems like maybe
you had real trees growing up. And immediately she
starts to tell him about her memories of
Christmas as a child and how have they stuck
with her and how important it was to her that their
children have those same kind of memories through life. And they get a real tree. Because as soon as he found out
why she wanted what she wanted, he completely came
over to her side. He knew that that
was a better outcome. Nearly every negotiation is like
that if we give it a chance. And getting to the point
where the other side is comfortable with
sharing that information is really what the point
of everything in the book is about. There’s always going to be
information you don’t have and that the other person
doesn’t know it’s important, which is why the more the
conversation gets going, the stuff that comes out, the
innocuous information could make all the
difference in the world and make not just
little differences. The Black Swan is
something little that makes a huge difference. And that’s really what
you’re looking for. It also saves time. It keeps you from
having to renegotiate. It keeps you from having
to do it over again you move forward in
a better partnership. You know, a great
summary from somebody is when you
summarize it in a way that they would never be
able to say themselves. The story in the book
is when I got my son to change the way he
was playing football. And he was a lineman. And line are great
football players. It’s a very blue
collar skill, kind of a combination of a hard
hat construction worker and a NASA scientist. Because they got to hit things. They put their heads down,
and they crash into stuff. And the stuff they’re
trying to crash in is trying to get away from them. So it’s like trying to shoot a
missile with another missile. It’s– football is a very
complicated, complicated job. And as a quarterback,
I never appreciated how complicated the job was,
because they just did it. And they moved them from
lineman to linebacker. And he went from
being told to hit everything he saw to get
out of way of everything. You know, only one thing. It’s the guy with the ball. Everything else, you duck. He wouldn’t do it. And the other way
you know you’re wrong is when you’re trying to
explain something to somebody and they look at you
and say, you’re right. If somebody says
you’re right to you, what they’re really asking you
to do is shut up and go away. [LAUGHTER] They don’t want you
to talk anymore. And so as my coach– or as
his coach and me are both explaining to him how he’s
supposed to be playing linebacker, guess what
he would say to us– AUDIENCE: You’re right. CHRIS VOSS: You’re right. And we’d be like, well, yeah. Because we like hearing that. We love being told
that we’re right. And then you go right back
to it the very next day. It was do it the wrong way. And I thought, you know, what
is going through his mind? You know, what’s
the matter with him? And finally, I took him
off to the side one day. And I said, you think that
dodging a block is unmanly. You feel like getting out of
the way of somebody who’s trying to hit you makes you a coward. And he got real
quiet for a second. And then he said, that’s right. And he started ducking
blocks the next day. And he told me the
other day, because we talk about this a lot,
he said, you know, I never would have been able
to explain that for myself. Until you said it, I
didn’t know it was true. And never in a
million years would I would’ve thought of doing
it was acting like a coward. But it was absolutely
what was driving me. And so when you can
summarize again, from– because if you say
that to him like that, it was almost like I was
trying to talk him into it. Well, it’s cowardly. But I was just
recognizing it for him even though it
sounded like it was against what I
was trying to get, it just gave him an epiphany. And it was really a
black swan for him. AUDIENCE: How do negotiation
strategies and tactics change when there is
emotional entanglement with your adversary
such as your spouse? [LAUGHTER] MAIRIN CHESNEY: So
the question was, how do negotiation
techniques change when there’s emotional
entanglement with someone such as your spouse? CHRIS VOSS: Well,
it’s harder for us to fairly reword it
in a way that they would say that’s right to. I mean, we get in our own
way so much more the closer we are to someone emotionally. And it’s harder to do that. There’s something we call–
I call an accusations audit. It’s very disarming. But I will take all the things
that you might be harboring against me, you know, whatever
names you might call me, and I would say, look,
seems like I’ve been a jerk the entire time here. Seems like I’ve been in the
wrong the entire time here. And the closer we
are to someone, the harder it is for us
to make those accusations. It could be a spouse. It could be a business partner
where things have gone bad. I mean, I’ve advised
people that were working on trying to divide
their business up with someone that they could
no longer get along with. And I said, look, you’ve got
to articulate everything bad that he would say about you. And I’m not doing
that, you know? I don’t care. I’m not doing that. So that’s us getting
in our own way. And I get in my own
way on a regular basis. And it’s hard for me. I’m not trying to make
it sound like it’s easy. It’s not. Most of the things that are
simple are also very hard. And the closer we
are to someone, the harder that often is is to
completely recognize how angry they are if the anger is at us. And we feel that
we’re not responsible. We know they’re
holding us responsible. One of my first
negotiations after I got trained on the
hotline was with the woman who’s now the ex Mrs. Voss. And I had learned on the hotline
that when you heard anger in somebody’s voice that you
would say, you sound angry. And it would make it go away. And it was like magic. You know, it worked for me
on the hotline all the time. And someone calling
on a hotline, there’s going to be anger
that’s going to be driving them one way or the other. So I’m in a conversation
with the now ex Mrs. Voss over the
discussion of something that was fundamental to our
relationship at the time. And I heard anger so, you
know, I’m kind of like, I got my hostage
negotiation skills here. I can handle this. It’s going to be easy. So I look at her and I
say, you sound angry. [LAUGHTER] Yes. I see you shaking
your head over there. You know that probably
didn’t go well. And she, like, blew up. She was like, rah, rah,
rah, angry, rah, rah. And I remember at the
time going like, ahh. But I’m a hostage negotiator. That’s not supposed to happen. Well, the problem was, it
wasn’t just that she was angry. She was angry at me. And she held me
responsible for it. And what I said
stopped short of that. Now a more accurate
thing would have been, it seems like I’ve
been unreasonable. It seems like I’ve been unfair. It seems like I have
never given you a chance. It seems like I
haven’t respected you. It seems like I haven’t
respected your autonomy– something closer that she could
have said that’s right to. And it’s harder when
we’re closer to them or if we don’t feel responsible. If they think we’re
responsible, it’s harder for us to recognize that. So that’s a long, long
answer to your question. I hope that helped. MAIRIN CHESNEY:
Is there anything that you’ve encountered
in popular media that you believe to be patently
false about negotiation or negotiation technique? CHRIS VOSS: Well, in the movie
“The Negotiator,” first of all, early on, there’s a line between
the Samuel L Jackson character and the woman playing his wife. And she says, well,
you’re a negotiater. You lie for a living. Lying is a really bad idea. And I don’t believe–
I never believed it in hostage negotiation. And I don’t believe in
a business negotiation. One of the reasons that I hit it
off with my friends at Harvard real early on, Bob Mnookin
running the program up there, they put a heavy emphasis on
teaching people not to lie. And just off the
top of his head, while I was up there
the first time, he said, Chris, you know, what
do hostage negotiators think about lying? And I said, don’t lie to anybody
you’re not going to kill. And they kind of
laughed, you know. And they thought that
was kind of funny. And then they got
uncomfortable, because they realized I meant it. [LAUGHTER] But– but then I said, you
know, but even then, it’s probably a bad idea. Because somebody that they know
is going to find out you lied. So I don’t believe in lying. I think lying is a bad
approach in negotiation. The other side’s
going to find out. In a business deal, you lie,
they’re going to find out. And they’re still in your world. I also don’t believe in the
attacking kind of a negotiator, I mean the tough,
pound the other side. It’s just bad for
business long term. People don’t want to make deals
with you anymore after a while. I mean, when I first got
up to the Harvard program on negotiation in their class,
I resorted to my hard bargaining techniques that I’d learned
as a kidnapping negotiator. Kidnappers are businessmen. They’re commodities businessmen. Whether we think it’s horrific,
they think it’s a business. And I had learned some very
hard bargaining techniques that I used to just
really pound people with. And they didn’t know
that I did it to them. I did it in a very
invisible way. The problem was, word got out. So the first two
or three times, you know, I really slaughtered
the other side. And then they started
talking about it. And it’s like your reputation
getting out in the industry. And pretty soon, no
one would talk to me. I mean, I’d sit down
for a negotiation. They’d stare at me, because they
were afraid to say anything. Well, I spoke to a CEO
in the energy business a couple of years after that. And he said, I’ve got such
a reputation in my industry as been a hard bargainer,
nobody will deal with me. I got an agreement sitting
on my desk right now. The other CEO was there
with me the whole time. We negotiated every term. He’s afraid to sign it, because
if you make a deal with me now, by definition,
you’ve been beaten. And people now no
longer want to admit that they’ve dealt with me. So no one will make a deal. So if you’re a hard
bargainer and you really beat the other side, word gets out. And it isn’t long and you
can’t make deals anymore. MAIRIN CHESNEY:
The question was, how do you begin a negotiation? How do you start? CHRIS VOSS: I want to hear
where you’re coming from first. Everybody shows up
in a negotiation having rehearsed their argument,
having rehearsed their talking points. The reality is until they
get that out of their head, they’re not going to be able to
listen to anything that I say. So while they’re focused
on what they have to say, I want to hear what it is. Because they’re not
going to be able listen to me until they’ve
had their say, number one. Number two, I now
believe there’s probably going to be some really
important information for me to pick up that I
didn’t otherwise have. As a general rule, I
can get in a negotiation in 10 or 15 minutes
information that would have taken me at least
two weeks to acquire otherwise if I could ever have gotten it. And there are certain
things about what’s going on in your world that no
matter how much research I do, I can never find that out. Your boss may have given you a
hard time about the last deal that you cut. You may have internal pressures
to get something done. You may have no pressures
to get anything done. You might not be hungry at all. There’s no amount of research
that I can do outside that I can find that out. I have to find it out from you. So I want to get the
conversation started so that we’re talking and
you’re comfortable talking with me as soon as possible. And so yeah, I want
you to go first. I want to hear where
you’re coming from. MAIRIN CHESNEY: The question is,
if the person on the other end is a criminal that
you want to apprehend, what can you possibly give them? What leeway do you have? CHRIS VOSS: If somebody
is talking to you, you’ve got something
they want– period. You know, I always said,
there’s always leverage. You’re asking, what kind
of leverage is there? What can I give them? My colleague Jim
Camp liked to say, there’s no such
thing as leverage. Because it all exists in
the eye of the beholder, in the mind of the beholder. I’ve got another
colleague says, it doesn’t matter what
leverage they have on you. What matters is what they
think of the leverage you have on them. Again, it all ends up being
in the eye of the beholder. If you’re talking to me at all,
I’ve got something you want. Otherwise you
wouldn’t talk to me. And you don’t even
necessarily have to be talking directly to me. If you’re communicating in
a way is somewhat designed to get you something
that you want, if you’re complaining
publicly, then there’s something you want. And it’s up to me to
recognize that and then take whatever that thread is,
whatever that black swan is, and use to establish a
working relationship, and find out what we can
make happen together. So if the criminal’s talking
to me, I’ve got leverage. MAIRIN CHESNEY: The
question is, what are the kinds of things
that a kidnapper wants? What are you
negotiating with them? CHRIS VOSS: If they’re
talking– every kidnapping, they want money. They want recognition. If we can give them
recognition or the flip side is, if it’s public
in any way, shape, or form that means that there’s
good publicity for them. They’re trying to get publicity. And if there’s good publicity,
there’s bad publicity. So if I understand that
dynamic, if they’re expressing themselves
in any way, there are things they
want to have happen. There are things they
don’t want to have happen. All I’ve got to do is sort of
flip it the other way around and make them worried
about the things that they don’t
want to have happen. And then that changes
their behavior. Because fear of loss is the
number one driving– myself, a lot of psychologists
believe the fear of loss is the number one thing
that drives our decisions. Psychologists usually fall
into one or two camps– we make every decision based
on either fear or love. Others say you make your
decision based on fear of loss. Whichever of those two
areas that you fall into, the bottom line is
fear and fear of loss are a big determinant
in how people think. So I just recognize that
and then just use the tools that I’m given. MAIRIN CHESNEY: What
do you say to people who say that there’s no
such thing as bad publicity if you don’t have
any to begin with? CHRIS VOSS: Most people
don’t like to be laughed at. And that seems to be
the one thing that hurts– ridicule seems to be the
one thing that even people that take that philosophy,
ridicule seems to be the one thing that they don’t like. So I understand the intellectual
thought process behind it. The only thing worse
than being talked about is not being talked about. But I haven’t seen anybody yet
that likes ridicule– anybody. So ridicule tends to be
the one powerful sort of x factor black
swan in publicity that makes a difference. MAIRIN CHESNEY: The
question is, when is time for threat and
retaliation if you’re put in that position? And once you do it–
should you do it? Should you wait? CHRIS VOSS: You know, I tend to
think of both of those things as like a nuclear strike. And there’s this
long, toxic residue. And you have the capacity
for a nuclear strike. And people like
the idea, you know, but I don’t know any time
that people after the fact have said, yeah, that was
the right thing to do. I’ve had negotiations go bad. And one went bad
earlier this year. And I still regret the
loss of that relationship. And I will try to repair it. One of our main
core philosophies is no deal is better
than a bad deal. And one of that
was a bad deal that stretched out over three years. And we made a lot of money. It was blood money. It was painful, painful. And I ended up very angry and
upset at a lot of the people that I blamed for
that, and still want to do what I can do to
repair those relationships. So it’s hard– emotionally
and intellectually, I just don’t want things going bad. And if they did
go bad, I’m going to try to fix at
some point in time. Because we’re all still
in the same environment. I mean, the residue from
negativity and people paying you back is brutal. It’s just really–
and on top of that, I don’t want to reputation. Because then that
reputation gets around. If you’re quick to
pull the trigger, even if somebody deserved
it, people find out about it. And then they’re reluctant
to deal with you. So many more people
judge your actions that are not directly
involved in the action. And I like to say, the most
important person watching me is not the person
in the interaction, but somebody is watching
how I conduct myself. And they’re going to try– and
the most powerful people sit back and study you
for a long time before they trust you to put
you in really phenomenal deals. So I’m not a big
believer in retaliation. I’m just not. Yeah, well, there’s
an old saying. It was attributed to Goldman
Sachs, you know, greedy, yes, but long term greedy. You know, short term,
you can go after them. Long term, your most
valuable commodity is time. Everybody in here
has one commodity that’s exactly equal to
Warren Buffet’s, exactly equal every single day. He’s got 24 hours, and
we’ve got 24 hours. So your most valuable
commodity is time. Step back, and what’s your
rate of return of investment of chasing a bad debt
versus cutting your losses and moving on? Psychologically,
you’ve been cheated. That person has hurt you. And you want to pay them back. And revenge is a dish best
served cold, as they say. But if you’re going to be
long term greedy, the best return on the investment of
that scarce commodity of time that you have, that 24
hours a day, nothing more, chasing a bad debt, or moving
on and going on to a better opportunity– I’ve seen a lot
of companies that have really begun to turn the corner
in their profitability when they understood how to
cut their losses and move on. Very easy to say,
very hard to do. I’m still working on that now. I know intellectually that
cutting my losses and moving on is a smarter move. I’m not saying I
can always do it. MAIRIN CHESNEY: For
the last minutes, I’d like to turn it over to you. You said you have
a story for us. CHRIS VOSS: All right, so yeah. I was asked not that long
ago if I learned negotiation. You know, I grew up in Iowa. I’m a small town Iowa boy. And I am the son of a
hardworking blue collar parents, Richard and Joyce Voss. And I think my mom is a
tough Midwestern woman, tough Midwestern woman. I remember the– I think
the first negotiation I was ever in. Because my dad was
like the SWAT team. My mother was the nurturing. You know, dad punished you. Mother was nice to you. And, you know, he had the belt.
And one time I got in trouble. I’m sure it was my
sisters got me in trouble. It probably wasn’t
my fault. I had an older sister, two younger. And so I was– my
mom said, you know, do you want me to punish you, or
do you want dad to punish you? Dad had the belt. And this
seemed like a no-brainer. There’s no way that mom could
hit it as hard as he could. And on top of that,
she didn’t even have a belt as far as I knew. So I remember saying
to her, yeah, you know, you can punish me. And she’s like, go to the
closet and get the yardstick. And I was kind of
like, holy cow, this was not part of
the original agreement. And I don’t remember
exactly what happened. But that was one of the things
that I learned early on, you know, that the nurturing
person could be a very tough person at the same time. So I will share with you
one of my favorite jokes. What’s the difference between
an Iowa mom and a terrorist? You can negotiate
with a terrorist. [LAUGHTER] And my mother hates that joke. [LAUGHTER] MAIRIN CHESNEY: Well,
thank you for sharing that. Thank you all for coming. And thank you for
being here today. [APPLAUSE]

Comments 100

  • hmm. Chris Voss is great.. so why did he get that girl to talk to.. couldn't they find someone confident without nervous trembling voice? Chris Voss looks like he shows mercy and pities the girl so she feels comfortable. i mean, it is all right the way it is, but it is not the niveau you would appreciate while listening to the talks about and such as this one.

  • High school chicks running Google. Very cool.

  • DESPISE this affected robotic interviewer. Everything that's wrong with the Bay Area now – personified.

  • Sadly, i don’t think these tactics work on me or work for me. For example I like the interviewer Very much, from her glasses to her sandals to her tone of voice and there is a high chance I say No to her in every proposal on almost everything…So I instinctively think making people like me, is just useless! Any statement about any situation is just oversimplification. This man has been more successful in getting FBI people like him and promote him than in negotiating with terrorists.

  • "if someone is talking to you, youve got something they want. Period." damnnnn love the simplicity of that quote

  • So how can i Negotiate getting a sugar daddy to spoil me and pay for all my bills? Can you make a video on that. Lol 😂 Not kidding.

  • the audio quality shit
    Google can't buy a better mic?

  • Theresa May needs to see this, she's been trying very hard to get a Brexit deal, but she was a remainer, she should want to remain: something better.

  • How did this girl get this job?

  • Good talk

  • It's called active listening…. and yeah it works everywhere. 🙂 lol

  • great book btw

  • Anyone else hear "Toxic Google" in the intro? 0:45

  • That confirmed it: I am a big fan.

  • I’ve been trying this for about a month. I haven’t had any one say “that’s right” maybe it’s the difference between how the UK/US language differs but have had people say “exactly” for example. Does that count? Overall I do feel that I now have a proper strategy for approaching negotiations.

  • This girl is so annoying – what is she 13?

  • She's the spitting image of what I imagine employees at Google are like.

  • Never Diff The Splifference

  • These google people are just retarded. What kind of a stupid intro is that. Go to a village in eatern europe youll find 10 times smarter kids than this. wtf google. are your geniouses all foreigners? is that it?

  • 'That's a great question' is SO overused and sounds pandering to me. Because they aren't ALL great…

  • There is an email setting for vacation, FYI.

  • The interviewer should be listening to what he's saying instead of simply waiting to ask the next question….

  • My 39yr old daughter says I'm a natural negotiator with people. I felt that was the nicest compliment ive ever recd from my kids! Love it!

  • federal bureau of manipulation

  • This guy is a real life James Bond.

  • The lady doing the interview is dynamic and well prepared. Wow, what a great conversation.

  • Loved listing to Chris. Such useful information we can all use in our day to day life.

  • SomeOne upload the Audiobook.

  • I'm a psychopathic assertive. I stay quiet to simply observe what you will do. If I can make it awkward, I will make it more than awkward.

  • Does anyone know why there is what sounds like flatware being clanked on dishes throughout this video? This doesn't look like dinner theater.

  • Sounds like she's saying "Toxic Goggle".

  • Chris Thank You, I read 3 chapters from his book that i got at the library and i had to buy it on amazon a hardcover. It took away so much stress from my job. I have gotten better and calmer and i do not know anyone with a more stressful job than a debt collector

  • What if you're dealing with a Narcissist, or Psychopath? These people are NOT reasonable. They won't share (50/50) the pie, they want ALL the pie. And they don't stop till they get it all.

  • I almost cried about that Christmas tree story

  • Lots of tips to practice on the people in our lives! The interviewer was excellent, no fumbling for words. Great stories and a joke or two! Was it just the lighting, or is Chris Voss sporting a little Hitler stash?

  • So what are we selling here? "Former FBI negotiator " (" Authority ")…. and a Version of "How To Make Friends And Influence People". Yawn

  • Why is he being interviewed by a 12 year old? Shouldn't she be at Target buying Clearasil ??

  • Just slap a tariff on them.

  • F

  • 10:35. Assert your best position, your need to get along with ppl, and you need to be analytical

  • id like to know what about when you talk to someone that has split personality disorder or bipolar? cuz their intensity wont actually correlate to how they truly feel. only how they feel while in that passionate mood.

  • Al Pacino

  • Ahh great another 1%er with useless tidbits about what… how to stumble on a random rock and be a lucky cunt like him. Fuck off.

  • Who is the girl? She’s incredible!

  • Oh my goodness, you should travel across America and train everyone in Law Enforcement not to lie!! Their lies to secure a admission of the crime they already think they know from the person they detain.

    I know there are good Officers but I do not trust them enough to talk to them anymore.

  • I am learning so much. I love these talks. Thank you, Mr. Voss!!

  • She has absolutely AMAZING hair. I hope she knows that.

  • She is a tall drink of delicious strawberry milk.

  • More like Al Pacino impression

  • Her outfit is completely disrespectful. I know this just an androgynous in the hood/sitting in the livingroom/comfy/cozy/hanging with buds look is popular among liberals today, but just the opposite of what the left pretends, it is not powerful. In fact, it is belittling to women. It's demeaning inasmuch as women have been indoctrinated to believe beauty is a thing they must hide in order not to offend as though the only ones entitled to be women at this point in time are those who are not. So wrong to give into the notion that we must downplay ourselves and all look alike, as opposed to flaunting our individuality. It is truly an attack upon women. It is the oppression of women. Moreover and especially, its demeaning, a slap in the face, to her guest! She looks like a prepubescent little girl. Ladies, curl you hair, put on your make up. There may be a time just around the corner where thanks to the cultures the left is importing, you will no longer be allowed to. I guess for now, I'll have to be happy with the fact that at least, she hasn't darkened her hair to further fit in.

  • Humble. Respecting another's dignity, empathy are super strengths not born if the ego. Mr. Boss is excellent.

  • how would you save hostages in mexico, the ones that get kidnapped for money and they almost always end up killing the hostage after receiving a portion of the money.

  • It should be "What's the difference between a mother and a terrorist? You can negotiate with a terrorist". Take location out of the equation, and it's universal correct. lol.

  • Thats right another word for validation

  • Chris voss is the man, but boy oh boy i just gotta say… FU*K YOU GOOGLE!!!

  • I've read his book and I'm still taking notes over here as I watch this

  • He uses all his little tricks on the interviewer and the audience and I don't think they even noticed.

  • I love his calm confidence

  • Talks at Google > Ted Talks. In fact the > sign doesn't even do it justice to say how much better it is.

  • I'm distracted by this moderation.

  • So when fbi surround my house and they begin talking me out, I can break the ice and say "Ah, so you have been coached by Chris Voss! "I'm coming out unarmed!"
    Just kidding, but it would be pretty funny

  • this guy is pretty cool

  • Overtalking = you lost
    Shmoozy salesman = I know you lean toward sociopathic tendencies so I’m going to feign interest so that you expend all your talking energy then when you feel you got me, you’ll get an irrevocable rejection. That’s your punishment for attempting to manipulate me.

  • I am in LOVE!!!! Your mind is truly amazing! I could listen forever! Learned sooo much! Thank You!

  • Bought your book sir after listening to two of your talks. Very intelligent and definitely someone with much for me to learn from.

  • Ever since I read this book, I actively seek out conflict. I think it backfired. 😂

  • Lie doesn't exist, but we do learn.

  • He's great. The one thing that annoys me (which may or may not have any merit) is when the interviewer jumps to the next question without skipping a beat after the interviewee just got done telling a great story. Not one nod or "wow" or "that's crazy!" or anything. The immediate bland dive into the next question is awkward and seems scripted instead of a conversation. I like her though, she is still young, so I hope this helps. If not, you can just be amused by my critique.

  • I read your book and still sold my soul to google. LMAO

  • Great content. I wish the interviewer let the Chris speak more. Short questions never hurt : )

  • felt bad every time he tried to make a joke, crowd is super serious lol

  • Genius

  • I love Chris and how he lays it out! Thanks #Google!

  • So this is the art of how to be persuasive…..ok so this is how we can make a deal…how to manipulate people …how to use people …like a weapon it has a function and this is the art in how to use it, …how to get the bullet to go where one requires it go…and the art of aiming is to use the emotions of the other who holds the target so they change their perspective and co-operate and the bullet of our interest hits bullseye….

  • "Can we have sex tonight?"
    "hmmm lemme try a different approach."

  • Speaking about empathy with high IQ nerd interviewer, that doesn't realize you could really need a bottle of water. Academic theory meets practice.

  • I am LITERALLY sitting here commenting about parenting and I have to erase and start over because you’re talking about parenting lol!

    Love this. Okay. So growing up both of my parents were very tough. But I always tell people my mother taught me everything I need to NOT do as a parent myself. She was very abusive and I won’t go into detail. My father, however, never laid a hand on me. He was tough, consistent, and I respected him very much. The difference was, my mother raised on the premise of fear. My father raised me to respect him. Both were effective until I was older, stronger, and no longer scared of my mother. I was 15.

    This seems to be the underlying method of your approach. You said your Harvard colleagues all brought the same ideas to the table, but different circumstances essentially. So, I share this hoping to offer another perspective for those viewing. Thank you very much for your time. 💋❤️🌹

  • Can someone mind to share the kidnapping happened in the philippines he was pertaining to 🙂

  • Is better for you to take down your fucking videos before I star reviling who you really are or maybe you would like to square this out with mossad or maybe the Chinese (the teams are just waiting for the green light).

  • You where in the swat teams you say right???? So let’s cut to the shit let the seals pick you up and they will know on the spot if you are lying or not they can tell.

  • Dam you say that you work with black water right(that’s made up of seals green berets and delta force) all of them working under you know who so why we don’t send some of your old coworkers to see if they recognized you(in all your fucking alters) you are really lucky that your face is so popular (I will changed my tune if I was you).

  • 37:40 Im humbled by his honesty in personal negotiations.

  • Brilliant! What a genuine man. Also, at 37:58 notice how he tilts his head sideways. This is a somewhat submissive posture which gives the power to the other person. I can’t help but wonder if he did that deliberately as she prepared to ask him the question.

  • I think it would be interesting to meet Chris Voss, I love a lot of your logic, I'd like to bounce some of my logic off him see what comes back

  • She looks miserable to be giving you credit…

  • I think that the underlying point in all of this is that the people who can help you are often the very same people who can hurt you. From that perspective, empathy is fundamental to giving you the roadmap to understanding how you can reach a mutually helpful position in any negotiation or even average conversations. Mirroring is a brilliant way of overtly showing your counterpart empathy. I love it.

    Chris's book and his speaking engagements have totally changed my life.

  • We have brains

  • I heard Toxic Google instead of Talks Google. LUL

  • . Inspiring quote from Chris Voss for you, "Well, the problem with that kind of an approach is if you hammer somebody in a negotiation, they're going to wait for the rest of their life to pay you back. And you don't hammer people that you never see again. There's no such thing as a one-off. They're going to be people that stay in your world one way or another, either your day to day life or they will see you again. So you want to negotiate successfully with people where afterwards they call you up on the phone and they say, nice job. Nice job."

  • "One of our main core philosophies is no deal is better than a bad deal."


  • She is the worst interviewer I've ever seen

  • Wow, Mairin Chesney, you are gorgeous! I am having trouble keeping focused on the subject of the talk. Mairin, is it a completely crazy idea that we get together to compare note soon to insure i have not missed something critical?

  • New drinking game: Take a drink every time Chris Voss says "Phenomenal".

  • I stopped looking at the video for a minute and I thought I am listening to Al Pacino.

  • It pains me to say this about a google employee, but this interviewer was outstanding, especially for her relative age.

  • Has anyone ever linked him to comedian Rich Vos? Yes, one s, but there is also a purty strong resemblance and the age window is correct. i haven't been able to find a cross reference on google. Could be coinkidink, but it struck me immediately upon seeing him.

  • Great talk. It's a shame that the audience seems to unresponsive and so many people are on their laptops.

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