An Essential Negotiating Strategy: “Go to the Balcony”

According to William Ury, co-founder of the Harvard Negotiation Project and an expert in de-escalating high-stakes conflicts around the world, bringing focus and attention to our own self-management is the first critical step in conflict negotiation. In his Path to Possible method he outlines three stages, the first of which he calls “Go the Balcony”. We may all have a different way of doing this-slowing and deepening our breathing, taking a walk, having a cup of tea, etc. This metaphorical break creates the space, in the midst of a conflict situation, to detach from the maelstrom of feelings of anger, frustration and betrayal that threaten to engulf us and overwhelm our judgment. By taking a “pause”, we can reappraise our understanding of the situation; brainstorm a fresh perspective; and bring imagination to our solutions.

          When and How do you “Go to the balcony”?

Read his latest book:
Possible (How We Survive (and Thrive) in an Age of Conflict) – by William Ury

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