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‘The Negotiators’ is a series of articles that bring to life the most common types of negotiator: what they are like, their strengths and weaknesses, as well as approaches that will help you negotiate with them. Designed to be practical tools, you may find value in referring to the set for a quick start in reading and handling those you encounter.

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The Mouse

The Mouse is an idealist. They enjoy routines and pleasant relationships, so negotiation can be a little challenging for them. They don’t really know how to negotiate and are afraid. “Negotiation is what the tough guys do”.

The Mouse is conflict-averse which can be disarming, and this approach has been seen to work against the most hardened negotiator. A Mouse must have a tough core to achieve this though, as they need to stay calm (or hide their fear), remain silent and unmoving. Eventually the predator may just go elsewhere to get their satisfaction or take pity on them and do a deal from frustration.

Sometimes The Mouse’s naivety and charm can get them an acceptable deal, but any half decent negotiator will take them to the cleaners. It’s like a fox in a chicken coop.

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How to work with them

If you need to get on with things, then it’s likely you can use your power or create power to overwhelm The Mouse. Any movement will give them extreme satisfaction as they will be amazed they got anything.

Remember to listen carefully for clues as to what value The Mouse has access to or you might miss an opportunity.

Alternatively the clever negotiator will work with The Mouse to encourage them to provide value and showing some compassion. You never know where they might end up in future.

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