Never Split the Difference by Chris Voss is a real-life guide to negotiation. He was an FBI Hostage negotiator and describes real life situations he was in. In this episode, we discuss why he choose the title, “Never Split the Difference”. Chris says that negotiation is hard, and we often compromise “because it is easy, and it saves face.” The fact is that for each party to get what they want; you must work towards a creative solution. “Creative solutions are almost always preceded by some degree of risk, annoyance, confusion, and conflict,” Voss says. The hard stuff is where the deals are.
In all aspects of life, there are negotiations…with your spouse, your kids, big purchases, jobs, contracts, etc. Without realizing it, we even negotiate with ourselves. Every yes we give is a no to something else. Yes, son, you can play baseball=mom doesn’t get to see friends, clean house, or cook a meal at home for about 3-4 months. We weigh options all day every day. As I type this, my yes to typing show notes is a no to vacation planning (since I’m at work, that’s not a bad thing, but still a negotiation). The point is that when saying yes or no to these things, if it’s something you don’t really want to give up, come up with a creative solution.
Baseball is hard, the kids are scheduled 4 nights of practice and 2, sometimes 3, games a week. On top of that, the other kids have places to be. So, I come up with maybe not creative solutions, but ones that benefit the family. We have rules about what time the game must be to allow eating out vs cooking at home. The oldest kid babysits the youngest kid while we go to the game. This gives the two at home quality time together and the oldest a little quiet time once the youngest goes to bed while allowing Kyle and I to give our full attention to our middle kid who needs it. So, yea, baseball is hard, but this creative solution benefits everyone in the family.
“You’ve got embrace the hard stuff,” Voss says, and we agree. We embrace the hard stuff every day.