Getting to YES

Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In

A guide to negotiation from members of the Harvard Negotiation Project. This book offers a strategy for coming to mutually acceptable agreements. 

240 pages. ©2011.
Available Formats:

Reader Reviews for this Book


Review posted January 26, 2023


I wish I would have read this book sooner. It organizes and makes sense of pieces of life experience I've had for a long time. I like the reframing and "same team" angle this book constructs for negotiations of all levels of importance. It was written decades ago, but the need for its techniques of focusing on complex problems alongside people with different interests (instead of wasting energy rigidly opposing people with different interests) is so relevant in our current times. Separate the people from the problem. Focus on interests, not positions. Invent options for mutual gain. This book includes community building core concepts and actionable tips to improve solution-seeking for challenging interpersonal situations.


Review posted January 25, 2023


This book took me a while to get through, but it was awesome! Giving it to my husband to read next. I really enjoyed the narratives; they were so relatable!


Review posted December 6, 2022


This book was very easy and clear read. It laid out ways to become better at conflict resolution with simple steps and real world examples. Each chapter was set-up in a way that helped the reader go through the steps with ease. Overall, helpful book that makes it easier to apply these ideas into real world settings.


Review posted October 9, 2022


The principles of negotiating in Getting to YES has brought about a new way of approaching the conversations around agreements in my life, and making choices when experiencing indecision and conflict.


Review posted August 17, 2022


Great book about Compromise and persuasion


Review posted February 21, 2022


good book, info easy to follow and digest


Review posted February 21, 2022


this book is great and so easy to read. it gives some info that is similar to other books but written in such a good way.


Review posted February 17, 2022


This is a great book, very useful for anyone learning negotiations.


Review posted February 9, 2022


I read "Getting Past No" about 10 years ago and thought it had great information. I was excited and curious about this book, but I don't think I got much more out of it than I had from the first book I read. If you haven't read either, this book has great concrete ideas and practices to help communicating in difficult situations.


Review posted December 15, 2021


A positively outstanding book. I am familiar with a leadership concept/tool called Adaptive Leadership and felt this aligns very well with that work. I like the idea of bringing many minds together and working on the issue at hand and separating out the people from the 'problem'. Very well written.


Review posted November 15, 2021


Good tips!

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Review posted September 13, 2021


This book providing me with additional skills on how to negotiate. I appreciated the questions and answers section at the conclusion of the book. I will use the information in this book in my professional work and personal life. Thank you!!


Review posted July 30, 2021


I enjoyed reading this self-help book. It encourages self-confidence and strong skills on how to be more direct in a positive light. I will keep this one on the shelf for refreshers now and again.


Review posted June 27, 2021


Negotiation and mediation are needed now more than ever in our world. At home, at work, at school, every where. This is literally one of THE books written on how to find agreement. Definitely worth your time.


Review posted June 1, 2021


This book gave me great ideas and tactics for standing up for myself.


Review posted April 14, 2021


basic, biased, boring The preliminary assumption that both parties have equivalent rational support for their ideas and equivalent right to a positive outcome stretches throughout the book and ruins it. After reading about a third i decided i wasn't learning anything i wanted to know. If capitulation and compromise are the way to get to yes, any person holding a righteous position, the one we should all aim to hold, loses before they start.


Review posted April 8, 2021


A must have in your collection of go-to books. Read it twice. Once for yourself and once for everybody else.

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Review posted April 1, 2021


I ordered this book as an audiobook (cd's). I enjoyed being able to drive and listen at the same time. The book has some great points and works toward being able to collaborate together to solve problems.


Review posted March 31, 2021


The four-point steps which define the Fisher and Ury method offer a fresh approach to navigating negotiations in an ever-evolving business climate. There is a fixed mentality to getting to the end result in most instances


Review posted January 22, 2021


Overall this was a good book and learned more about negotiation and helped me develop a plan for an upcoming negotiation I have. The intro and first chapter were a bit of a hard read, but press through as it gets better and makes a lot more sense as they authors break down each section.


Review posted November 29, 2020


Insightful and thought provoking, a must read for those who may be more passive like myself.


Review posted October 22, 2020


Good read.


Review posted September 6, 2020


Getting to yes is a good book for understanding how negotiations play out in the real world without being too heady. The authors overlook how different people are treated in the world based on their identities, and in negotiations. But it's a place to start.


Review posted September 2, 2020


I love the title of this book. I love the idea of the book. My review is sketchy because I requested the book in digital form and I was never able to access it on my device. I am “getting to yes” by explaining why I could read this fascinating title. I hope you can!


Review posted July 23, 2020


This book has been very helpful in guiding my choices during this pandemic, when negotiating expectations about working from home!


Review posted July 10, 2020


The book presents good negotiating principles, though it does not present the basics of negotiation as one might expect. It draws on a very wide variety of examples - from family negotiations to international ones - which can make it harder to see how the principle applies to your work.


Review posted June 28, 2020


this helped me navigate around my hostile ex. It helped me with ways to talk and strategies to stay on path.


Review posted March 29, 2020


Informative and useful.


Review posted February 14, 2020


I really like this books' approach and the consideration of efficient negotiation rather than just effective negotiation.


Review posted January 28, 2020


I've applied the principles of this book to help me avoid falling into the trap of arguing with anger which always is a position of "win & lose"...'Getting to Yes' gave me insight into reaching "win-win" agreements in the midst of disagreements.


Review posted January 13, 2020


Not a bad read. No real comments


Review posted December 30, 2019


"Getting to Yes" is chock full of great ideas to be successful in a win-win situation. The authors are comprehensive in their approach and quick to get to the point and provide down-to-earth suggestions that work. This book should be a mandatory read and discussion book for college students.

Janice I Woody

Review posted December 19, 2019


I really liked the examples and examinations


Review posted November 12, 2019


As the authors say in the book. The ideas and principles in the book seem familiar and some are ways that I have worked with people in the past. However the techniques in this book are laid out with more thorough strategies with better explanations about how and why it is effective than what I knew before.


Review posted September 26, 2019


Getting to Yes was extremely helpful and helped me learn some tactics to improve my techniques. Its an easy read and makes sense.


Review posted July 1, 2019


Wonderful book on communication with a meaning.


Review posted June 24, 2019


Great book that was easy to read and implement helpful strategies right away.


Review posted June 11, 2019


Very good suggestions and language for negotiations. I liked the concept of expanding the pie so everyone gets what they want out of a deal.


Review posted May 23, 2019


Helpful book for myself and also shared with clients.


Review posted April 21, 2019


A classic description of negotiation that seems to hold it's own over time. The audio version was well done and easy to follow along with.


Review posted March 7, 2019


Some repetitive info but worth a read.


Review posted February 21, 2019


As someone who is uncomfortable bringing up topics that might be more challenging to talk about with others such as asking for money for a fundraiser or addressing conflict during a meeting. This book is wonderful at not only examining how we bring up conversations, but is universal in framing statements to better enhance communication and minimize confusion and miscommunication.


Review posted February 14, 2019


Very useful. Concise, well put together. Can read what you need and run through case studies.


Review posted February 11, 2019


I wish I'd had "Getting to Yes" before I was married or a manager. I learned so much about negotiation that I can use in both my professional and personal life.


Review posted February 1, 2019


Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement without Giving In, by Roger Fisher and William Ury, is one of those books every mediator is advised to read. As they themselves note, many who read their book recognize they already practice many of the approaches or techniques they recommend for how to approach any kind of negotiation--except they do not know it. The value of this book is to clearly articulate the concepts by which interest based negotiation is pursued (what either side needs and why), as opposed to position based (what either side wants). By identifying the needs which a variety of possible solutions might satisfy, establishing criteria by which to judge the effectiveness of solutions, and establishing one's BATNA--Best Alternative to Negotiated Agreement--and encouraging the other side to do so as well, negotiators can reach good win-win agreements that are workable, meet every side's needs, and preserve on-going relationships with one another. The authors use a variety of examples--from situations requiring negotiating, from international treaties to business deals to landlord-tenant settlements to custody plans--to illustrates concepts. The writing is simple, direct, and well-organized, making for an easy but substantive read. I highly recommend it for anyone engaging in any type of negotiation, or helping others to negotiate as I do in my work.


Review posted December 3, 2018


Great book on negotiation.

Katie Dwyer

Review posted October 28, 2018


This is such an incredible book. I have been a reluctant negotiator in my life, but these insights make it clear that it really can be a collaborative and win-win exercise. I so appreciate this book!


Review posted October 11, 2018


Great book didn't get exactly what I wanted so I may need to read up some more or practice some of the skills that the book has to offers.


Review posted September 16, 2018


Excellent read. A must have in your book collection. A great tool for leadership.


Review posted July 31, 2018


I gained no skills from reading this book. The information in this book should be common sense to most adults.


Review posted June 16, 2018


A practical guide to getting closer to a win/win in negotiations. Whether working with an above board business partner to navigating the less-than-honorable person, this book will lead you down a path lined with fairness and respect. You'll become favorite person to work with!


Review posted May 15, 2018


Classic book on negotiation, worth a read again even if you've read it before.


Review posted April 24, 2018


Good, practical information. I certainly feel more confident negotiating. As it talks about, we are all negotiating all the time, and this book is helping me practice my negotiating skills in a more intentional and effective way.


Review posted March 31, 2018


Very good book. Gives lots of examples on how not to give in so easy.


Review posted March 28, 2018


Great book on how to negotiate without feeling like you have to give in.

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Review posted February 26, 2018


Good book. States negotiation is not the most effective approach to get to what everyone wants and its not to see the negotiation game as a win/lose experience, but a way to develop relationships. Asking questions to find out more about an individual(s) position/interest, is more productive to come to alternative results that leads to win/win results.


Review posted November 29, 2017


Fisher and Ury provide excellent content and strategies for negotiating. A must read for all entrepreneurs !!!


Review posted November 6, 2017


This book provides an excellent overview of problem-solving strategies to use for two seemingly opposing parties. These include identifying interests behind the positions of an argument, agreeing on standards, and something as simple as sitting on the same side of the table. These methods are somewhat common sense but it is nice to see them written out clearly and methodically in one place. The book leaves the reader wanting to try the system out and with suggestions for how to begin small. The book provides practical advice for any problem-solving encounter, not one that is strictly defined as negotiation.


Review posted October 22, 2017


Great book easy read!


Review posted September 15, 2017


What I really liked about this book is that it walks you through practical applications and I found myself thinking about different chapters long after reading them. I would recommend this book.


Review posted August 30, 2017


I enjoyed listening to this book and will do so again. The balance of clear, straightforward advice with illustrative examples felt just right. Much of the information will be useful far beyond typical negotiations, in the broader realm of "dealing with others."


Review posted August 15, 2017


Extremely useful book regarding things to be aware of (for both sides) when attempting to negotiate different issues in order to maintain relationships


Review posted July 17, 2017


Maked me think about past situations and how I could have handled them differently. I'll be able to put the principles used into play.


Review posted May 19, 2017


A really thorough and helpful book for those who struggle with negotiation.


Review posted May 5, 2017


It's a classic! Lots of good advice. Especially in small towns, negotiating shouldn't be about winning. You have to see these people again, in the grocery store, the PTA. And we really need our good relationships if we're going to build our communities.


Review posted April 5, 2017


I'm an educator. The book was good, but I felt like i had to make all the connections to my career myself. I would definitely recommend it for business professionals. It would also be great for a book club where reading could be followed by discussion.


Review posted March 14, 2017


Listening to the book again was a wonderful refresher of material. There is a lot of material so first timers with "Getting to Yes" may want to choose the book option. This would have been challenging if I was not already familiar with the concepts.


Review posted January 22, 2017


Excellent book on negotiation and useful for daily interaction.


Review posted October 20, 2016


This is the kind of book you want to read if being pushy is not your thing. This teaches you how to negotiate your side without being pushy and allows for smoother communication by getting your views out there in a non-combative way. What a great read. I only gave it 4 stars because the techniques described are not always the best practice when negotiating with family or non-business environments.


Review posted October 6, 2016


loved it great for sales


Review posted August 2, 2016


I tried this in audio form and could not get through it. The concepts made sense, but I would have enjoyed it more in print.


Review posted July 22, 2016


Good review of negotiating strategies. Pushing for a win-win. Recognizes that not everyone negotiates in the same manor and discusses alternatives for "milder" negotiators.


Review posted June 25, 2016


Sch a great resource for rethinking the bigger conversation!!


Review posted June 22, 2016


I enjoyed the framework of this book - identifying common negotiation tactics that often don't work or even worsen relationships was a real eye-opener. I immediately began thinking of how our organization may not be using the most effective negotiation strategies internally, but also even with our own clients. I did find myself intermittently skeptical, just thinking that more difficult individuals (people who lie, for whatever reason, or use underhanded tactics, refuse to talk about common goals or separate 'positioning' from common ground), but the second half of the book does a decent job of addressing these issues and how you can negotiate around them. I also have to give the book the benefit of the doubt - it's basically relearning an entire form of negotiating, and I will have to start implementing the tools in my own life to real understand if they are effective or not. I can't just assume or make a judgment from reading. So, fingers crossed that this makes tough discussions easier going forward!


Review posted June 7, 2016


I liked this book, though I wish it would have given more specific examples in order to understand the concepts.


Review posted May 25, 2016


Yet another great one! Thanks to the Ford Family Foundation!


Review posted April 21, 2016


Getting to yes highlighted key persuasion and communication concepts that can be applied in a variety of professional and educational settings. Concepts like distinguishing between people and positions and looking for mutual gain are very intuitive applicable ways of thinking that leaders can employ to build morale and cohesion with their teams, suppliers and external partners.


Review posted March 16, 2016


I enjoyed the pace of this book. While it did review some material from other authors and books, it didn't go into so much detail that it felt overdone. Before I had finished reading this book, a co-worker asked if she could read it when I was done!


Review posted March 9, 2016


I appreciate having the option to order audio versions of these titles.


Review posted February 18, 2016


A fantastic, easy to follow guide to understanding the process of negotiation. One of the keys...focusing on the issues, not the positions. Too often negotiations can devolve into brinksmanship. Instead, as the authors suggest, there are a number of ways to change the game, to break down walls rather than build them up.


Review posted January 26, 2016


Great book! Found very informative advice that I can apply to my every day life.

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Review posted December 21, 2015


Another great addition to my professional library. Thanks.


Review posted November 26, 2015


This book was extremely insightful and helpful for not just business but life, should be a required read. Good Stuff.


Review posted November 15, 2015


Though this book is older (and updated and revised!), I found it had some great basic information about conversing ("negotiating" still has connotations of pursuing an end, rather than embarking upon a quest for understanding). Separating "people from the problem" is a great tactic and one that far too few people understand. What's worse, doing that does not sell newspapers, as it were, so our government and media seldom embrace this tactic--much the opposite. There is some great advice in this book.


Review posted November 13, 2015


Ultimately useful information and I loved having a CD I could listen to during my daily commute. I did feel like the focus was more aimed at serious negotiating instead of simple daily negotiations but the principles are the same.


Review posted October 8, 2015


Excellent! The best book on negotiating strategies I've ever read. The approaches offered in this book can be used in many different situations in which reaching agreements are necessary. Highly recommended.


Review posted October 6, 2015


Excellent book by the Harvard Negotiation Project. Great tips on separating the people from the problem, effective communication and options for mutual gain.

Lynne Patrick

Review posted September 6, 2015


good advice, a good book to listen to rather than read, a bit like homework


Review posted August 11, 2015


Terrific - Practical and winsome. Some of the steps are a bit simplistic, but could become more robust with time and effort.


Review posted August 10, 2015


Getting to Yes is an excellent book to boost your leadership and communication skills. Negotiations in communications are a pivotal point in any conversation and/or business and to be able to read a book that can enhance these skills is beyond valuable. The book lays out different areas in which we as humans can work on in order to obtain these new skills or even how to make the skills that we already know become stronger. This is a great book and I would recommend it to anyone who is looking to better themselves.


Review posted August 7, 2015


This book was a quick read with useful insight on the art of negotiation.


Review posted July 14, 2015


Dr. Ury is amazing. This book really gives the reader great tools in negotiating for a better win-win-win. I really gained insight in "getting to the balcony." And, I would recommend this read to anyone!


Review posted April 28, 2015


This is by far my favorite book so far from the Select Book list. It is jam-packed full of thoughtful, concise strategy on how to negotiate in any kind of situation. They even address negotiating uncomfortable subjects like very difficult and manipulative people. This is great logic to carry into any kind of relationship whether it be with your child, spouse, coworker, business dealer, or terrorist. Highly recommended!


Review posted April 20, 2015


This book cannot get much better! It provides extremely effective ways to communicate and deal with almost every circumstance via negotiation! Absolutely instrumental in the corporate world, offering professional ways to communicate with others in the workplace and in your personal arena! I highly recommend this book to anyone wanting a fresh approach to successful communication ideas!


Review posted April 17, 2015


The insights and techniques in this book will be helpful not only in high stakes negotiations but in everyday interactions with colleagues, family, friends, etc. The many real life stories and examples are helpful in illustrating the points in the book and give meaning and context to the principles described. I will be using these techniques from now on. I highly recommend this book.


Review posted March 17, 2015


This is a life changing book.


Review posted February 27, 2015


This is a great read for learning about leadership and negotiation. I really liked being able to have the audio option because I can listen to it at work.


Review posted February 25, 2015


I really enjoyed reading this, and improving my negotiating skills, as well as being able to stay focused on topics, as well as remove and recognize emotion and ego.


Review posted February 8, 2015


This book is helpful in my daily work in economic development, non-profit management, general relationship and community building work.


Review posted January 8, 2015


This is a wonderful tool to help you gain information and skills on successful negotiation. The chapters are arranged in a progressive step-by-step outline of tactics and tips. Highly recommend!


Review posted December 1, 2014


Interesting perspectives on consensus.


Review posted November 28, 2014


I wish I had read this many years ago. It's worth taking time to break down all the parts where negotiations can "break down" and leave things in permanent stalemate. I found it full of promise for better results.