Tuesday, April 16, 2013

[Book Review] Trump-Style Negotiation: Powerful Strategies and Tactics for Mastering Every Deal by George H. Ross

Rating: 5/5
Learning Level: 5/5
Genre: Non-Fiction, Business
Book Review:

I picked up this book out of the name Donald Trump. I did not know Trump from the beginning. I knew him from a reality show apprentice. I knew that he is a successful business man. But his image to me is kind of negative. I thought that Donald Trump is a typical capitalist who usually focuses on money, not people.
After I read this book, I have a different image for Donald Trump. The real Trump could be really good, or the book might tell only a good part of Trump’s story, or the book might be intended to promote Trump’s image. But that doesn’t matter. What important is that I learn that negotiation might not have to have a win-lose result. If both sides compromise, we can walk away with something we can live with. That’s should be enough. We just don’t need the best deal, if such the deal would crush the other side to the ground.

Is it too idealogical? At first glance, the answer is yes. But, in a long run, this approach will protect your reputation. You might not be known as a smart but ruthless negotiator, but a tough but fair negotiator. No one wants to work with the former, but a lot of people want to work with the latter. In a long run, people will bring business to the latter, not the former. Trump style negotiation aims at  maximizing the benefit of both sides, not just of yourself. This style will arguably give better benefits  and satisfaction in a long run. 
Everyone is a negotiator. We negotiate with our parents, our friends, our spouses, our bosses, our subordinates, vendors, etc. If you’d like to be a good negotiator--the one that gets a good deal and happiness, this is the book for you. If you still think that you should get the best deal and you don’t care about the others, this book might not suit you. 
George H. Ross--the author of this book--has been an associated with Donald Trump for many years. He is an excellent real-estate lawyer. He lays down a lot of things you should and need to know about negotiation. I really like this book. It’s not too long and I learn a lot from reading this book. 
The audiobook that I’ve got is narrated by Milton Bagby. I like his narration style. By listening to him, I felt like listening to Ross (although I’ve never heard Ross’s voice).
Overall, I would highly recommend this book. This is a great book. It is easy to follow. It is interesting. And, I learn a lot. If you are like me, I think you will like this book.


  • A skilled negotiator focuses on building relationship, not on getting the best deal 
  • Here are what you need to do to be a skilled negotiator:
    • Take note and prepare document yourself.
    • Research. Remember that Information is power. 
    • Exploit their weakness while protecting yours.
    • Always be skeptical. Do not believe anything right away.
    • Do not take a phone call. Prepare yourself and call them back.
    • Keep POST (People, Objective, Strategy, Tactic) in mind.

Table of Contents

  • Frontmatter
    • Foreword by Donald J. Trump.
    • Introduction: How I Became Donald Trump's Negotiator. (3.08)
    • Chapter 1: What Is Negotiation...Really? (17.31)
    • Chapter 2: Hone Your Personality: Build Trust, Friendship, and Satisfaction with the Other Side (50.04)
    • Chapter 3: Probe to Learn What the Other Side Wants, Flush Out Weaknesses, and Uncover Important Information (1.23.07)
    • Chapter 4: Be a Master Salesman: Create Bold Solutions to Problems and Convince the Other Side They're Getting More Than They Ever Expected(1.53.22)
    • Chapter 5: Control the Place of the Negotiation: Use Timing, Deadlines, Delays, and Deadlocks to Your Advantage (2.20.57)
    • Chapter 6: Harness the Power of Human Nature: Psychological Negotiating Tactics (2.54.16)
    • Chapter 7: Information is Power: Become the Expert on the Topic You're Negotiating (3.28.02)
    • Chapter 8: Keep Multiple Solutions in Mind: Remain Flexible and Creative About What You Need and Want (3.52.20)
    • Chapter 9: Win Through Discipline: The Deal Book, We-They List, Post Checklist, and Other Powerful Planning Tools (4.18.20)
    • Chapter 10: Power Negotiating Tactics and Countermeasures (4.55.27)
    • Chapter 11: Negotiating with Difficult People (5.25.45)
    • Chapter 12: Get Tough Strategies...and When to Use Them (5.55.47)
    • Chapter 13: Dos and Dont's of Skilled Negotiators (6.18.39)
    • Chapter 14: Telephone and E-Mail Negotiation Tips (6.46.31)
    • Chapter 15: When to Use Nonbinding Letters of Intent or Memoranda of Understanding (7.17.04)
    • Chapter 16: The Most Intricate Deal I Ever Negotiated (7.32.54)
    • Chapter 17: Six Tactics for Increasing Your Power in a Negotiation (8.03.47)
  • Index.

Book or Audiobooks?

Personally, I prefer audiobooks. It's fun, and I can listen when I'm doing something else. It also makes other activities (e.g., jogging) a lot more fun. For more detail about audiobooks, please read [this post].

There is one more reason that may encourage you to go for the audiobook version. You can get it now for FREE. Audible offers you a free trial for 14 days. Even if you get the book and cancel the subscription right away (so that you don't have to pay), you can keep the book. And, don't worry if you lost the audiobook file. Just log into audible.com. You can keep downloading the over and over again.
About the summary: It takes time to finish up a book. And, when you do, sometimes, you want to review what you learn from the book. If you do not make  notes as you read, you might have to go through the book once again. This can be time-consuming when you are dealing with a book. But you can still flip through the book and locate what you are looking for.

However, when the material is an audiobook, it is extremely hard to locate a specific part of content. Most likely you will have to listen to the entire audiobook once again.

This book summary will help solve the pain of having to go through the book all over again.

I am leaving out the details of the books. Most books have interesting examples and case studies, not included here. Reading the original book would be much more entertaining and enlightening. If you like the summary, you may want to get the original from the source below.

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