It is always wise to have a best possible alternative to a negotiable agreement (BATNA), which is the best outcome you could achieve if the negotiation fails and you must follow another course of action.25 For example, say you want a salary raise of $5,000 per year, but you will accept $3,000 if it is offered. What will you do if you are unable to get the $3,000 raise? Will you settle for your current salary? Will you quit your job and try to find a higher paying job in another organization? Once you have identified your BATNA, you will be in a better position to figure out your zone of possible agreement (ZOPA) which is the area where two sides in a negotiation may find common ground26 For example, say you request your $5,000 salary raise and your boss tells you that the best offer will be $3,500. Since this figure lies within the zone that both parties find acceptable, then it is likely an agreement will be reached.

Unit Learning Outcomes

ULO 1: Analyze the different bargaining approaches (CLO 1, 4 and 5, PLO 1, 2, 3, 4 and 6)
ULO 2: Evaluate the different negotiation and dispute processes of reaching an agreement acceptable to all parties  (CLO 2, 4 & 5, PLO 1, 2, 4, and 6)
ULO 3: Examine the different types of conflict and determine if these conflicts are positive or negative to an organizations performance. (CLO 2 and 3, PLO 1, 4, 6, and 7)

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Blended Students: The initial response is to be posted to the unit discussion thread at least five (5) hours PRIOR to the scheduled class session. Respond to a minimum of two peers’ initial postings. The peer responses are due by 11:59 p.m. (CT), on Sunday. In unit 8, peer response postings will be due by 11:59 p.m. CT (Central Time), on Friday.

Online Students: Initial posts are due by 11:59 p.m. Wednesday, CT (Central Time).  After posting your initial responses, engage with your fellow classmates by responding with 2 or more replies to other students’ posts.  Your responses to peers’ posts should be completed every Sunday by 11:59 p.m. CT, but you are also required to sign in and contribute at least 4 days per unit (do not concentrate your responses over only one or two days). The assignment will consist of your responses to specific questions in each unit that are to be submitted to the discussion area. It is highly recommended that you support your commentary with external resources (preferably not the textbook), and cite according to APA format.

To summarize;

  • If there are two discussion questions for the unit, you must answer both of the discussion questions. In addition, select two posts of your peers for each discussion question and react to them (for a total of 6 posts).
  • In a situation where you may be assigned a single question for the unit, answer your discussion question and react to the posts of three of your peers (for a total of 4 posts).

Discussion Questions

Read the following article to answer the discussion questions (link below).

MacDermott, T. & Riley, J. (2011). Alternative dispute resolution and individual workplace rights: The evolving role of fair work Australia. Journal of Industrial Relations, 53(5), 718-732.

“Alternative dispute resolution and individual workplace rights: The evolving role of fair work Australia” (Links to an external site.)

  1. Compare and contrast the Fair Work Australia with Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in the United States.
  2. In your opinion, describe the protections that should be standard for employees in the workplace.

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