THERE ARE CERTAIN people in this world who see “no” as a final answer. And then there are those who see the word “no” as an opening for a deeper discussion. Lake Forest’s Dr. Victoria (Vicki) Medvec, author of the newly published book Negotiate Without Fear: Strategies and Tools to Maximize Your Outcomes, finds herself in this latter camp.
Dr. Medvec is the Adeline Barry Davee Professor of Management and Organizations at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. Additionally, she is the co-founder and Executive Director of the Center for Executive Women at the Kellogg School and the CEO of Medvec & Associates, a consulting firm focused on highstakes negotiations and strategic decisions.
“For many years, my clients have been asking ‘Could you write a book? Would you write a book?’” she says. “The pandemic provided me the opportunity to finally write the book that should have been written many years ago.”
In Negotiate Without Fear, Dr. Medvec delivers an authoritative and practical resource for eliminating the fear that gets in the way of successful negotiations. Readers learn unique strategies honed over decades advising Fortune 500 clients on high-stakes, complex negotiations, and addresses the question that many of her clients often pose – “what would Vicki do?” Negotiate Without Fear is written for executives and all the dealmakers who work for them. Additionally, advice is provided in every chapter for individuals who are negotiating for themselves in the everyday world.
“Case studies play a really important role in my book showing how good negotiation strategies work in real-life situations,” Dr. Medvec says. “I even included one about a teenager negotiating her pay at an ice cream shop. I wanted this book to be accessible to anyone who picked it up.
“It doesn’t seem to matter if you’re an expert negotiator or a novice, many people enter negotiations with some element of fear. Experts fear they’ll lose the deal and novices fear engaging in conflict,” she explains.
“Most people—especially women—hear the word ‘no’ and assume the conversation is over. I like to think that’s when the discussion is just getting started.”
Dr. Medvec’s book was launched on July 14, 2021. A renowned expert in the areas of negotiations, executive decision making, influence, and corporate governance, Dr. Medvec teaches these topics to senior-level executives and Boards of Directors from companies around the world. In addition, she advises CEOs and their reports on critical decisions and negotiations, including mergers, acquisitions, significant customer contracts, supplier contracts, and partnership agreements. Her clients include many household names, including McDonald’s, AbbVie, Microsoft, Google, Cisco, and McKesson to name just a few. A number of these clients have written glowing testimonials of Dr. Medvec’s book.
“My Chief of Staff and long-time right-hand Barbara (Abelson) planned one of the most extraordinary book launch parties,” Dr. Medvec says. “It was at our home in Lake Forest and my husband (she married her high school sweetheart), mother, children, many family members as well as colleagues were all able to be there. It was the most incredible night—I will never forget it.”
Already in its second printing, Negotiate Without Fear is having a positive impact in board rooms and family discussions alike. “Always be fearless,” she says. “The worst someone can say is ‘no.’ And we all know how I feel about that.”
Negotiate Without Fear: Strategies and Tools to Maximize Your Outcomes can be found wherever books are sold.