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Telling Stories

Stephen White
Telling Stories [Converted]
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My wife and I have lived in several properties during our married life. On one occasion where we were negotiating to buy a new-build property, we were asked by the estate agent to have a meeting with the property developer. We thought this was unusual, but we agreed and the meeting was arranged. 

The developer turned out to be a larger than life personality. I broached the issue of the asking price for the property which we thought was on the high side, and I indicated that I was looking for a discount. The developer became conspiratorial. Leaning towards me and lowering his voice he advised that if a certain proportion of the asking price was paid directly to him in cash (a brown envelope was mentioned) then a significantly lower price was feasible. My wife and I immediately walked out of the meeting. 

My internal reasoning, decided instantaneously, was simple. If I had agreed then I became complicit, and I prefer to sleep at night rather than worry.


Situation - What would you do?

In an interview with HR and Senior Management which might lead to a promotion, your performance is contrasted with a colleague who might also be a contender. 

You are aware that your colleague’s behaviour at work has from time to time been neither legally nor morally acceptable in your view, and that management is possibly unaware of this. 

Do you refer to your suspicions during the interview? 


Earlier this year we asked Scotwork alumni and blog readers to give their responses to some negotiating dilemmas which involve controversial situations. Find out the answers to this question and six others in our new Book, which also includes advice and life experiences from our Chairman and Negotiation Expert, Stephen H. White.


Click here to download the 'Controversial Tales of the Unexpected' Book.

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