In the ongoing government negotiations in Washington, President Donald Trump did yield some ground on the “Dreamers” last weekend, but he continues to demand $5.7 billion for his southern border wall to open the government. To House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the “offer” was a nonstarter and she refuses to talk about the wall unless Trump opens the government.
So the stalemate continues.
When neither side in a dispute is willing to take a leap and compromise, and constituencies unite behind their leaders’ recalcitrance, what you get is what we have now: a protracted stalemate made worse by acrimonious tit-for-tat pettiness. Moreover, a significant step by either side seems increasingly risky politically, and thus highly unlikely.
We know that in dealing with seemingly intractable political conflicts, negotiations that take a zero-sum, win/lose approach rarely succeed. So, what to do?
Drawing from research and practice on negotiation, it makes sense to try changing both the approach and the negotiators.