“ Best Alternative to a Negotiated Agreement” is a terminology that refers to the course of action that a party undertakes in a negotiation when talks fail and an agreement becomes elusive. Simply abbreviated as BATNA, this terminology was developed by Roger Fisher and his fellow researcher, William Ury. The two researchers gave a process with three steps in demanding for a BATNA. The first step involves the development of the actions to be undertaken in case no agreement is found. This would be followed by the conversion of more promising indications into practical options.
Finally, the option deemed to best fit the situation would be tentatively selected. BATNA is a fall back plan for parties in case a negotiation ends up being unsuccessful. It could be developed for any given situation that calls for some form of negotiations including pay negotiations and resolution of complex conflicts. It is normally not easy to identify BATNAs. BATNA is crucial for bargaining as it provides external and internal leverage. Its support to people allows for the engagement of members in negotiations. A successful negotiator considers it as a critical component because, under normal circumstances, a bargaining committee should accept the BATNA as the worst resolution.
For accurate valuation of deals, all considerations should be taken into account including time value of money, relationship value and the probability that the other party would consider their end of the bargain. Thus, it would be difficult to judge all the other considerations bearing in mind that the values borrow from qualitative or uncertain considerations and are not factors that could be easily measured or quantified.
For a negotiation to be considered successful, the goals of the party of reference have to have been met. Additionally, the party should be able to determine the settlement in the negotiation with the other party and look for a pattern or consistency. Together, these advances goodwill and improves on relationships. A strong BATNA would positively influence negotiations towards success.
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