As a result of a claim, 30 people, none of whom knew each other prior to the filing of the claim, are negotiating a settlement with a pesticide company, which is owned by the government. The company sold lawn products that it said they were not harmful to pets. After hundred of dogs and cats died from exposure to pesticide, the company withdrew the product from the market. The 30 people are seeking compensation for their lost pets. The company has gone out of business and left $250,000 to settle all of these claims. You are a representative of the former company, given the task of negotiating a settlement with the 30 people. You will receive a bonus if you can settle for less than the full amount. You know the amount of money is to be distributed but the claimants do not.
You are thinking of doing the following things: (1) demanding that the claimants appoint a representative for you to negotiate with, and then you can make sure the representative receives a premium for getting the parties to agree to settle; (2) telling the claimants that the company left only $100,000 for paying claims; (3) telling the claimants that the company also has other expenses to pay, so if they don’t reach agreement by the end of the day, the money will be gone.
Now please answer the following questions:
1- What negotiation skills should you use in this negotiation?
2- How would you determine whether the negotiation is conducted with substantive fairness?
3- What concealment behaviors would be ethical and unethical in this negotiation?
4- How would you deal with the government in the negotiation process?
5- How would you create trust in this negotiation?