Organizational Negotiation Case Study


Organizational Negotiation: Case Study Carrefour Negotiations

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In the negotiation process, a third party can be hired to carry the negotiation on behalf of an individual. The hired third party will have limited power in making a decision. Throughout the negotiation process, they will have to refer to their clients. A constituent is an individual who agrees with one party in the negotiation process and is considered to have an independent influence on the outcome. The negotiation constituent is answerable to the principal negotiator. A case, for example, is an individual negotiating on behalf of a union needs to first get the voted agreement by the union members who are the constituents before it is even considered an agreement. On the other hand, a negotiation agent is described as a third party individual who acts as a representative for an individual or corporation and has complete or partial authority to act.

The negotiation audience is identified as; the people who are represented, the members of the negotiation team, and the other party involved in the negotiation process. According to studies, people perceive audience acceptance. They are similar to actors on a stage in this regard. A total stranger’s presence at the conference would be enough to switch a person’s negotiating style from passive to hostile. In front of an audience, negotiators want to show strength and aggression (“How an audience impacts your negotiation outcomes,” 2012). They work hard to earn the appreciation of their people as well as those on the other side. This urge to gain respect emphasizes the importance of maintaining one’s dignity. A negotiator should feel compelled to be appreciated by the individual with whom they are negotiating. This has potentially dangerous consequences. In negotiations, people who have a deep desire to be liked are particularly fragile. For the paper, the identified audience will be; the employees who are represented by the labor union and the small suppliers who will be supplying Carrefour.

A negotiation alliance expands on the “Don’t do it on your own” approach. Rather than having one or more consultants negotiate on your behalf, a group of vulnerable actors would otherwise be competitors band together to bargain with one or more dominant actors in a joint, coordinated fashion. As part of an alliance, you can pool your assets to take on a formidable foe (Staff, 2020). Negotiating teams are unfit to negotiate on their behalf in some cases. Lawyers, brokers, and other third parties may offer the professional advice required to succeed in various issues, including settlements, book sales, and corporate mergers.

According to Dacher Keltner, power in negotiation affects two critical cognitive controllers of behavior: behavioral approach and behavioral inhibition. Effective negotiators engage in “approach-related” activities like projecting optimistic emotions and looking for incentives in their surroundings. Self-inhibition is common among powerless people and is caused by fear of possible risks. Power motivates negotiators to become more constructive in their approach. Negotiating teams with more ability is more likely to make the first proposal than those with less power. The strong are also more tenacious than most negotiators, less willing to give up when faced with difficulties and challenges, and more likely to aspire for more ambitious targets. High-powered negotiators seldom consider a deadlock as long as they have something to benefit from. This aggressiveness yields benefits, facilitates integrative compromises, and leads to the exploration of mutually advantageous concessions that favor both parties (Staff, 2021).

Ethical Approach

William Ury and Roger Fisher describe negotiation as “back-and-forth contact structured to find an understanding whenever one and the other party have some common goals and others that are opposing.” This description is just a component of the knowledge you’ll need to negotiate effectively (“7 steps for negotiating ethically,” n.d.).

  1. Know your BATNA and WAP: the negotiating parties need to know their interests and desires. In the case of Carrefour, the negotiators should be aware of the price that will be able to yield profit to the company and what price range will make the company encounter losses. The price is a crucial determiner of the negotiating strategy and offers that Carrefour is likely to accept to ensure profits. Carrefour does know their Best Alternative to Negotiation agreement and, therefore, can identify their Walk Away Price.
  2. Do not Mislead: higher rewards in the negotiation table are incentive enough for a party to lie and mislead the other party. To ensure this is not the case, the parties need to have the right amount and type of information about each other and the situation, which will guide them in the negotiation process. Carrefour tends to give less information during the negotiation process. The mantra less is more works best for them. By not revealing a lot of information, Carrefour ensures that it does not give unnecessary and misleading information.
  3. Limit counterproductive emotions: it is best when the involved individuals negotiate with facts; this will ensure that one can get a financially advantageous deal. To tame these emotions, negotiators need to prepare and plan for the negotiation to build confidence. In negotiating with their employees, the labor union and the Carrefour representatives take time to prepare and plan how and what strategy to use. At the end of the negotiations, the two parties were able to make a financially advantageous deal to both of them; Carrefour and the employees.
  4. Honor your Obligations.Anything you plan to agree to during a negotiation, make sure you follow through. Your credibility, as well as the integrity of your company, is on the line. Carrefour will have to ensure that it meets all its obligations and agreements with its suppliers and employees. Also, the company has to ensure that they pay their suppliers in the timeframe stipulated in their contracts.
  5. Respect relationships: During the negotiation, as much as the parties involved want the best possible outcome, it is equally important to treat the other individual concerning promoting a healthy relationship. The involved parties can keep an open door for further negotiation to improve on the settlement and agreement reached. Carrefour will respect the relationship that they have with their employees and their suppliers. These two groups are essential to the company’s success, and it is critical that the working relationship that they enjoy being nurtured and respected.
  6. Seek counsel: the party that does not feel capable of negotiating should ask for a third party who is more likely to negotiate productively. You should also seek advice to see if you’re reasoning it through objectively before initiating a negotiation. In the negotiation process that Carrefour is involved in, the employees got their union rep to represents them in the negotiation process.


How an audience impacts your negotiation outcomes. (2012, December 18). The Standard in Negotiation Training Programs – Karrass Seminars.

Seven steps for negotiating ethically. (n.d.). Illinois CPA Society | Enhancing the value of the CPA profession.

Staff, P. (2020, October 29). How coalitions benefit negotiators at the bargaining table. PON – Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School.

Staff, P. (2021, May 10). Power in negotiation: The impact on negotiators and the negotiation process. PON – Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School.


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