The first step in becoming a successful negotiator over the long run is to understand precisely what negotiation is—and what it is not. Let's start with a definition of what it is:
Negotiation is communication between two or more willing parties with conflicting goals in order to achieve mutual gain.
That eighteen-word sentence contains a lot of powerful ideas, so let's break it down phrase by phrase.
Negotiation is communication—It's a forum for exchanging thoughts, messages, and information. It's not a sport or a battle or a magic act. It doesn't require any special tricks or even oratorical genius. It is simply an attempt at connection.
...between two or more—The key word here is "more." Even ...