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Negotiating Your Contracts

Lesson 5 of 10

What Is Your BATNA?

Vanessa Van Edwards

Negotiating Your Contracts

Vanessa Van Edwards

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Lesson Info

5. What Is Your BATNA?

Lesson Info

What Is Your BATNA?

so you're in the negotiation and hopefully it's going well. You've been building report, you came in with your research, you've been preparing your answering their pain points. You're talking like partners. What I want you to actually think about is not just offering hard desire. So mostly will go into negotiation. They say I want to renegotiate my lease and I want to pay X. Amount of dollars or I want to earn X. Y. Z. Amount. But I actually don't think about is yes. You should know that number, that thing that you want. But you should also think about what's called a bat nuts. This is not my concept. Really fascinating concept that was developed about negotiating which is a better alternative to negotiating agreement, acronym Patna. This is really important because if you only have one number, the negotiations get very far. It sounds like this. I'd love to work with you. We'd love to have your business but I can't go any higher than X. Y. Z. Amount. They say sorry, we can't do that. A...

nd you say okay bye. Very short negotiation doesn't really go anywhere. And it often ends up in a lot of headache because people are like well if you're not going to budge not gonna budge, It is critically important that you have some alternatives. These are alternatives that have to get really creative and more creative. You can be the better the best way for me to explain. This is the compensation. So a lot of people go into salary negotiation with a number in mind. I want to make $50,000. I want my salary to be $50,000. That's all I'm going to take. But a bat. Nha would be okay. Yes I would like $50,000. But I would also like preferred parking. And if they can't do a few $1000 I would really be happy with more vacation days. And if they can't be $50,000, I'd really be happy if I had a higher title. They couldn't be $50,000. I would really want to have a new computer and a new desk chair. ErGonomic for my back. If I can? T $50,000, I would love to have a learning stipend where I could buy books or education courses for myself. If I can't have $50,000 I really wanted so that I can work from home one day a week. That was seven or 8 badness alternatives to negotiate an agreement. And so what I want you to think about in the negotiation is what else could your partner do for you? If you're really partners, you're trying to fix each other's problems? What are some other problems that maybe aren't on the table? But could be on the table. I talked about this with police. Right? Most people think I can only pay three grand a month for my lease. Well what if they are willing to cover your water bill because it's cheaper for them if they package it all together? What if they were able to offer you two more parking spaces? Could they need 3500? What if they were willing to um that you notice that they have lunch for all their employees down the hall? On Fridays? Could they offer lunch for your employees to? All of those things are bad nas that help you feel like partners when you're in the negotiation you say? Well how about this? How about that? That could also get them thinking creatively so that they offer things that they didn't even think of before. And so a baton is a critical thing to offer during the negotiation because it prevents deadlock. If you have really good bat nas, you don't have a shutdown negotiation, you don't have a contentious negotiation, and, ideally, you're helping them think more creatively with you.

Class Description

We negotiate all the time -- from lease agreements to suppliers, to lenders, and even to hiring contractors or employees. Everyone needs to understand the dynamics of powerful negotiations, but for many, the thought of negotiating can feel agonizing and uncomfortable. Do you struggle talking about money, asking for money, asking for discounts? You are not alone. No one is a born negotiator and there are tools you can learn right now to improve your negotiation skills. The fallout from the pandemic and subsequent shutdowns wreaked havoc on so many small businesses, but that also means that landlords, suppliers, lenders, and others might be more willing to renegotiate your contracts. The time is now to hone your negotiation skills.

Join Vanessa Van Edwards, published author and behavioral investigators, who has been featured on NPR, TED, CNN, and USA Today who will teach you the science behind successful negotiations.

Negotiation is a life and career skill and in this class you will learn:

  • How to build rapport with your negotiating partner
  • How to prepare for any negotiation
  • Understand Your Better Alternative to a Negotiated Agreement (BATNA)
  • How to get your partner on the YES ladder
  • How to use negotiation as a business research tool
  • Tools for nervous negotiators


Vanessa is Lead Investigator at Science of People. She is the bestselling author of Captivate: The Science of Succeeding with People. Her book has been translated into 15 different languages and more than 20 million people watch her on her popular YouTube channel.

Her unique work has been featured in dozens of media outlet including CNN, BBC, CBS, Fast Company, Inc., Entrepreneur Magazine, USA Today, the Today Show and many more. Vanessa regularly speaks to innovative companies including Google, Nike, Facebook, Comcast, Miller-Coors, Microsoft, and Penguin Random-House. She has been a spokesperson for Dove, American Express, Clean and Clear and Symantec.

Millions visit her website,, every month for her methods turning “soft skills” into actionable, masterable frameworks that can be applied in daily life. Hundreds of thousands of students have taken her communication courses on Udemy, CreativeLive, LinkedIn and her flagship course People School.

Vanessa is renowned for teaching science-backed people skills to audiences around the world including SxSW, MIT, and CES to name a few. Her groundbreaking and engaging workshops and courses teach individuals how to succeed in business and life by understanding the hidden dynamics of people.

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