Agree to win

10th September 2004 at 01:00
AGREE TO WIN: ESSENTIAL STEPS TO NEGOTIATE IN YOUR WORK AND LIFE. By Hugh Willbourn. BBC Books pound;7.99

According to Hugh Willbourn, negotiation isn't just to do with making financial deals. "Negotiations can take place anywhere, any time, with anyone about anything. Every job and every family calls for negotiation."

Some people are better at it than others but it's a skill you can learn.

And, naturally, Willbourn is the one to teach you. Follow his precepts and by this time next week you'll have got yourself a better job, calmed down a threatening drunk and sold your old motorbike for an outrageous sum.

This is very much a self-help book, albeit one that gives sound advice and makes you feel you really can do much better. Some of what Willbourn tells us is obvious, but we all know people who could do with taking notice:

"Smiling increases your confidence and your happiness. There are two sorts of smile, a real one and a forced one. By far the most powerful and rewarding is the real one." Competitive ballroom dancers take note.

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