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Using emotional intelligence to seal the deal – Chris Voss | The Black Swan Group

Joining us on the latest episode of CBT Now is Chris Voss, CEO of The Black Swan Group and Keynote Speaker. Voss was the lead international hostage and kidnapping negotiator for the FBI and is a bestselling author of Never Split the Difference: Negotiate as if Your Life Depends on it.

Key Takeaways

1. In his book, Voss emphasizes the importance of tactical empathy. He explains that tactical empathy is related to emotional intelligence (EQ), which is supported by the knowledge we have gained from neuroscience and how emotions react.

2. Voss argues that emotional intelligence is a complex and innate ability that everyone possesses. Unlike intelligence quotients (IQs), emotional intelligence has no limits. However, you can improve your emotional intelligence by observing other people’s body language, tone of voice, and facial expressions.

3. Emotions are contagious; if you speak calmly or cheerfully, others will feel and reflect it. Additionally, using an inquiring tone can make difficult conversations more manageable, allowing individuals to express themselves more directly but in a gentler manner.

4. Being a great negotiator is essential in sales, but the key difference lies in aligning the sale with the customer’s “wants and needs.” Once you have identified these, you can negotiate with them effectively. 

5. As easy as it is to say yes, people have conditioned themselves to say “NO” as a way to protect themselves. Voss’s group flips “yes” to “no” during negotiations to elicit objections and accelerate the process. For example, he conditions his sales team to ask questions like, “Have you given up on this project? Is now a bad time to talk? Does this look like a bad idea?” 

6. Confrontation is a subset of negotiation. However, entrepreneurs should remember that confrontation can also be viewed as collaboration for long-term relationships. By changing the narrative, people can be more open to trusting you, making your communication efforts more effective.

"The most dangerous negotiations are the ones you don't know you're in." – Chris Voss.

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Jaelyn Campbell
Jaelyn Campbell
Jaelyn Campbell is a staff writer/reporter for CBT News. She is a recent honors cum laude graduate with a BFA in Mass Media from Valdosta State University. Jaelyn is an enthusiastic creator with more than four years of experience in corporate communications, editing, broadcasting, and writing. Her articles in The Spectator, her hometown newspaper, changed how people perceive virtual reality. She connects her readers to the facts while providing them a voice to understand the challenges of being an entrepreneur in the digital world.

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