2. When is the right time to use Straight Talk”:

The Negotiator’s Toolbox – Aiming for Agreement, Dealing with Conflict, Different Negotiation Styles

This assignment consists of two parts: the right time to use Straight Talk

Part I is a multiple-choice of 14 questions.

Part II includes five essay questions, where you are requested to provide a brief reasoned answer in the offered space.

Mandatory Readings:

• Narrative 1 ” The Negotiator’s Toolbox – Dealing with conflict, Aiming for Agreement, Different Negotiation Styles ” 

• Shell, G. (2001). Teaching Ideas: Bargaining Styles and Negotiation: The Thomas-Kilmann Conflict Mode Instrument in Negotiation Training. Negotiation Journal, 17(2), pp.155-174.

Brett, J. and Thompson, L. (2016). Negotiation. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 136, pp.68-79.

Preuss, M. and van der Wijst, P. (2017). A Phase-Specific Analysis of Negotiation Styles. Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, 32(4), pp.505-518.

Zartman, I.W., (2001). ‘The Timing of Peace Initiatives: Hurting Stalemates and Ripe Moments 1’, Global Review of Ethnopolitics, 1, 8–18.

 Part I: Multiple choice

1. Broadly speaking, the ‘tools of Talk Power’ can be categorized into tools that focus on the current situation and tools that emphasize possible future outcomes. But which are the tools that link or bridge these two categories? Select one:

  1. Sweet Talk and Trash Talk
  2. Triple Talk and Team Talk
  3. Small Talk and Timely Talk
  4. Tough Talk and Straight Talk


2. When is the right time to use “Straight Talk”:

  1. In the beginning
  2. After a hard concession has been made
  3. At the very end
  4. When the point to be made is firm and important
  5. If the other party is using “Tough Talk”


3. True or False? Negotiation strategy relies on multiple sets of tools that can be applied in any situation. Select one:

  • True
  • False


4. What is the essential difference between Positions and Alternatives:

  1. Negotiations take place between Alternatives rather than Positions
  2. Sticking to your position offers your side more leverage
  3. Proposing Alternatives can be considered weak
  4. Alternatives and Positions are essentially the same


5. True or False? There are no clear rules and regulations determining when to use which ‘tool of Talk power’. Select one:

  • True
  • False


6. In 1988, “Safe Talk,” has been famously used in Stockholm by the heads of the US and Soviet delegations. What actions and external condition enabled this:

  • Walk in the woods
  • Walk on the wharf
  • Walk in the mountains
  • Walk on the beach


7. When is it necessary for the mediator to act as a “formulator” or “manipulator” and what is this kind of talk called:

  1. When communication is not enough: Team Talk
  2. When one party threatens to leave: Sweet Talk
  3. When facilitation is not enough: Triple Talk
  4. When there is deadlock: Safe Talk


8. What are the characteristics of negotiations highlighted in the definitions? Select one:

  1. Negotiation is restricted to situations such as international fora, business and the boardroom.
  2. Negotiation is used to mitigate potential conflict between opposing parties.
  3. Negotiation is a daily activity, which we engage in to realize an interest both sides have in common or an exchange, if the interests of the parties differ.
  4. Negotiation it is about ensuring your interests are satisfied.


9. True or False? Effective diplomacy depends on timing, concession-making, critical analysis, and teamwork. Select one:

  • True
  • False


10. When two opposing factions – such as France and Germany after World War II or Nelson Mandela and Frederik Willem de Klerk in South Africa – decide to face a common problem together, they have committed to: Select one:

  1. Timely Talk
  2. Safe Talk
  3. Team Talk
  4. Triple Talk


11. “Don’t Crow!” Is an advice given by diplomates that points to the necessity for negotiators to:

  1. Not use your success for personal promotion
  2. Only speak publicly about outcomes that benefitted their party
  3. Not speak publicly about negotiation outcomes
  4. Present the negotiation as beneficial to all parties


12. Match the ‘tools of talk power’ to their definition.

  1. Means telling things as they really are.
  2. Is a put down; to be used sparingly for those rare occasions when negotiation is not an option.
  3. Contains a vast array of inducements to appeal, promise, soothe and ease.
  4. Focuses on the details of the negotiations
  5. Expresses firm positions, threats and sanctions
  1. Tough talk
  2. Straight talk
  3. Small talk
  4. Sweet talk
  5. Trash talk


13. Granting praise to an opposing party, even unsubstantiated or undeserved, is a good example of:

  1. Happy Talk
  2. Sweet Talk
  3. Team Talk
  4. Safe Talk


14. Match the ‘tools of talk power’ to their definition.

  1. Timely talk
  2. Sticky talk
  3. Triple talk
  4. Team talk
  1. The process of bringing different parties together to work in a shared enterprise.
  2. Is mediated negotiation
  3. Is seizing the right moment in the conflict or during negotiations.
  4. Binds the parties to a series of talks and agreements and makes it difficult for them to break off or walk away. 


Part 2: Essay questions

Based on the readings of Module 1 and your own conclusions from the reading, please elaborate on each of the five following questions in brief (4-5 sentences per question):

  1. From the 12 tools of talk power, select the one you would prefer to use, and the one would you only utlise in exceptional circumstances? Please justify your choices while demonstrating your understanding of each tool.


  • Please describe examples from the public sphere (international diplomacy, politics, international business) which you consider illustrative of the tools of talk power. Select two tools of talk power, and describe the example in 3-4 sentences (not the example from the module text), and briefly give an assessment what impact the use of those tools had in the particular case.


Please describe which two conflict modes you are most likely to adopt during negotiation, and briefly assess the risks and values of each mode. Please justify your response based on personal experience or logic from the reading (1-2 sentences on each one, highlighting when and when not to use it).


  • Please describe the two conflict modes that are the most difficult for you to negotiate with and draw from the reading to explain specifically how you will better address these two modes in future encounters.


  • Choose 6 of the tools, that you have yet to reference in this CAT, and separate them into two categories:

1) Tendency to Escalate toward Deadlock

2) Tendency to Deescalate from Deadlock

Briefly justify your designation for each tool and explain a scenario in which you would use each:


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