Bring Yourself: How to Harness the Power of Connection to Negotiate Fearlessly | Morvarid Taheripour | 329

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How to Harness the Power of Connection to Negotiate Fearlessly | Morvarid Taheripour | 329

Morvarid (Mori) Taheripour is a globally recognized executive, negotiation expert, author, and consultant. For almost 20 years, she has taught Negotiation and Conflict Resolution at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, where she also co-founded the Wharton Sports Business Initiative. Mori is a six-time recipient of awards for excellence in teaching and is also the author of Bring Yourself: How to Harness the Power of Connection to Negotiate Fearlessly.

Mori is also the Principal of MT Global Strategies, where she delivers negotiation training, sports consulting, and social impact consulting to help industry-leading organizations achieve worldwide success. Her past clients include Major League Baseball (MLB), Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO), United Parcel Service (UPS), and more.

Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn: 

  • Mori Taheripour talks about teaching negotiation — and explains how negotiation is a lot like life
  • The lifelong lessons Mori learned from her first business venture
  • Why it’s important for entrepreneurs to make time for self-reflection
  • How to effectively navigate negotiations if you’re a people pleaser
  • The keys to successful negotiations: humanity, kindness, and respect
  • Mori discusses the value of curiosity in business and in life
  • The transformations Mori has seen while teaching negotiation to business leaders

In this episode…

What negotiations do you make on a daily basis? While difficult conversations like negotiations over business deals or partnerships may come to mind, Mori Taheripour says that negotiations happen from the moment you wake up in the morning to the moment your head hits the pillow at night. So, how would it impact your life if you could become a better negotiator today?

As a negotiation expert, Mori has helped dozens of companies, organizations, and business leaders master the art of negotiation. According to her, the key to negotiating isn’t about aggression or transaction — instead, it’s about tapping into your human connection and speaking with empathy, respect, and kindness.

Join Dan Kuschell in this episode of Growth to Freedom as he joins Mori Taheripour, a globally recognized negotiation expert and the Principal of MT Global Strategies, in conversation. Mori shares her tips for becoming a better negotiator today and explains how to navigate negotiations if you’re typically a people pleaser. She also reveals the importance of taking time for self-reflection and speaking with empathy and respect. Stay tuned for more!

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Episode Transcript

Dan Kuschell 0:09

Welcome to, the show that brings you inspiration, transformation, and leadership. We’re helping you connect the dots, see the blind spots, and get unstuck. So you can go out there and create more leads, more sales, more growth. More importantly, so you can have a bigger impact, have a bigger reach, and make a bigger contribution. Is that what you want? If that’s what you want, you are likely to love today’s guest expert. Let me ask you a question. Do you believe that with everything you’ve been through these last few months, maybe this last year or so that maybe just maybe Life is like a negotiation? Right? And would you love to have the ability to discover the secrets of how relationships actually play a far bigger role in negotiating than maybe you’ve been led to believe? And what if you can learn how to confidently negotiate in an authentic way, by better understanding your personal value, as well as being able to communicate your story in a genuine way to negotiate better? Would that be worth to you? Well, today’s guest expert is the definitive expert to be able to share with you how to be able to do just that. Her name is Mori Taheripour. And when I say that she’s got an extensive background in helping people just like you, bigger companies, small companies, everywhere in between, that would be a complete understatement. So I just want to make sure I get this accurate because check this out. She is a globally recognized executive with over two decades of negotiation, diversity and inclusion and sports industry experience. She teaches negotiation and dispute resolution at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. She’s on the faculty of the Legal Studies and Business Ethics department, and a seven time recipient of awards for excellence in teaching. Now, she’s blushing right now, so just bear with me. She’s a principal of MT Global Strategies. She’s worked as a consultant for diverse clients, including major sports teams and leagues, Fortune 100 companies, universities, foundations, charities, and professional associations. Some of our clients have included Goldman Sachs, Major League Baseball, National Basketball Association, the National Football League, the National Football League Players Association, Wells Fargo, ups, the list goes on and on. So let me ask you this. If they trust her to help with their negotiations, what could she help you with? Well, today, it’s my goal to make sure to help pull out some of the best wisdom that she’s made available. And I want to encourage you right here right now, to go get her new best selling book, bring yourself how to harness the power of connection to negotiate fearlessly. We’re going to talk about that today. And a whole lot more Mori. Welcome to the show. How are you?

Mori Taheripour 3:13

Thanks, Dan. I am blushing. I’m trying. I’m a little speechless. Every time I hear a bio like that, and like, Who’s he talking about? I’m excited to be here.

Dan Kuschell 3:23

And I know, before this show, more, you had said something that I thought was really powerful based on what’s been happening these last several months. And you know, over a year now, life is a negotiation. Right. Talk about that a little bit, your context of that. And you know how you see it showing up today for everyone, all of us, you me, everybody?

Mori Taheripour 3:42

Yeah. So it’s funny when I first started teaching the subject, you know, every class, every student, there was some level of anxiety for some more than others. And I started understanding that the fact that people had so much anxiety around it was because they would think bad negotiations in the context of a transaction of some sort that they had had that had gone wrong, or a big negotiations that they had had, where there was sort of the winner or the loser, unfortunately, they had ended up on the losing end of things. And so they are like, scarred by these experiences. And so, you know, the minute they heard the word negotiations, it’s like that level of anxiety just went up. And they were typically taking the class to learn how to do those things better meaning those transactions and my perspective on negotiations if it had been just that I probably never would have been teaching it because to me negotiations is literally something we do from the moment we get up in the morning to when we go to sleep at night, right from what you’re going to wear to you know, the negotiations with your kids and the breakfast that putting them to bed, you know, your your significant other parents, yourself, you know, throughout the day, big decisions that you’re making. And so it’s sort of like the soundtrack of our lives and I loved sort of the power behind that. Because the minute I would re align this notion of what negotiations is, from my perspective and tell them what the class is all about is to really be able to navigate those daily conversations and those daily decisions. In addition to some of those other sort of that, that transactional conversations, it’s like people would sit back a little bit more comfortably. And you could see them sort of, first of all, breathing a sigh of relief, because they were like, okay, so maybe this is something that I’m actually better at doing that I thought I was, because it’s such a larger context. And so became more about navigating life and your decisions, as opposed to a mere transaction of sorts. So it became far more interesting. And so that was really the context in which I wrote the book. And the way I see as navigating things over this past year plus, somebody asked me a couple of weeks ago, Don’t you get tired of because I do so many podcasts and things like that for the book? Don’t you get tired of saying the same things over and over again, I said, that’s the thing. It hasn’t been the same that the negotiations we’ve had, from the moment we sort of went into quarantine have been so different along every part of this journey, we went from, how to change the way we work, to how to negotiate conversations that we were having in the household between sharing responsibilities to parents who were now all of a sudden parents and school teachers, right, figuring out how they were going to do that. Then we went into companies trying to figure out what they were going to do with their employees, do they go after a small business loan, and keep the employees on and take on that risk, deciding how long they were going to be able to do this? Or were they going to just sort of lay people off and start a new when the economy goes back? And then you know, the whole issue around the vaccines, and now all of a sudden, everything sped up, and we’re going back a lot faster than maybe most people thought. So the conversation has been different. And I say that to say there’s a very long answer to your question is that negotiations is life. And it changes all the time. And maybe the core negotiations through all this is the one with yourself, because you’re at the end of the day are the ones navigate the one navigating those conversations. But it’s so interesting. It’s like this elegant dance that we do all the time. And sometimes it’s easier than others. And sometimes it’s not, but it’s just life.

To me, negotiation is literally something we do from the moment we get up in the morning to when we go to sleep at night. - Mori Taheripour Click To Tweet

Dan Kuschell 7:30

That’s right life is negotiation, and like what if you could get more clarity on how to win and help others win? In this game? Great game called life. Right? How cool would that be? And I think you’re going to find some amazing insights. And we’re going to be just be able to give you a snapshot of what some of those insight if you want to go deeper again, I want to encourage you to go get her book right now go to Amazon, you can go check out her site, we’ll give all the resources I will have links in the show notes for you. Bring Yourself: How to Harness the Power of Connection to Negotiate Fearlessly. You can get it share it with some people you care about you got, you know, some holidays coming up Father’s Day guess mom’s Day gifts, you’ve got birthdays, you’ve got holidays and a whole lot more that you can share. And by the way, if you want to come back to this episode number one, I encourage you to grab a pen and grab a piece of paper and jot down some notes. You can come back to this episode of, that’s, if you never want to miss an episode, go to, that’s Now, most of us have a backstory of like, why we’re doing what we’re doing or what our focus is at that given time Mori, I’m gonna put a spotlight on here and it’s probably not something you would expect. But can you think to a time when you experienced like, a terrible negotiation yourself? Like a personal story? Like you made a huge mistake or is like one of your biggest failures? Maybe? Like What Did you What What happened? And then what did you learn from it that maybe our viewers, and our listeners could learn from it too?

Mori Taheripour 9:12

Yeah, it’s funny because I mean, I talked about this in my book, the book is sort of written in almost an autobiographical format. So I do not preach from the perch of perfection at all, hoping that some of the I won’t even say mistakes, because mistakes oftentimes become really big lessons. And so yes, those lessons are what I want to communicate not just from my own perspective, but from the perspective of students that I’ve had small business owners I’ve worked with, athletes I’ve worked with. And the common thread is and through all of this is that we do have those challenges. We do have those, the blocks over which we stumble, and then if use appropriately those lessons then inform us forever as opposed to sort of school. Barring us forever, and you never getting over them, because these are really formative experiences. And mine is probably and I talked about this in the book as is, I went, I started my own company, in partnership with somebody at a very young age, I was planning to go to business school and got an offer I simply could not refuse. I was working in public health at the time and doing a lot of social marketing and working with high risk populations around communicable diseases like HIV AIDS and, and using athletes, celebrities, and really sort of innovative formats through which we communicated the messages to these communities. And I got a great offer. And I thought, you know, what, I can defer Business School. So I’m going to start this company, I was very young. And I thought at that time, that the only way to be able to do this successfully was to ask my former boss at the time, a different time to partner with me. And he was much much older than me, in fact, he was getting ready to retire. And I thought, you know, I need him to, with his experience, to lead sort of a lot of the decision making and the guidance on this, it could only work if I had somebody like him with me. And, you know, I learned a lot, I really did, he did have a breadth and depth of experience. But after a certain amount of time, what I started to realize was that our values were really different around certain things. And we saw decisions in very different ways. Except I just kept on your playing my own power, I thought I must be the one who’s wrong, right? What do I know, I’ve not, you know, don’t know stuff. And, and, you know, after a while, and I’m going to give you the very, very, very, very sort of executive sort of overview of this, like, I can’t give you the full perspective, because it would just take too long. But at the end of the day, I realized that over time, I was becoming less excited about being in the business. And it was wearing me out a lot of ways, right. But the excitement I had the beginning was dissipating. And part of it was the challenges of being in business, right, I got that great opportunity at the first part, but then we had so many economic downturns, you have Silicon Valley went bust. So we started 1997 Silicon Valley on a bus, but the economy turned quite sour this, then it was just sort of this up and down. And you get exhausted. Yeah. But what I learned was that, that exhaustion kind of really sort of weighs you down even more, when you’re not all that excited about the business anymore, right? The resilience factors sort of goes away. And it took about 10 years. For me to come to the point where I said, I just can’t, I’m not, I’m not happy, I’m not happy. I’m not, I don’t feel like I’m living in my values. It can’t possibly be that I’m wrong all the time. And so I feel like I have more knowledge at this point, I feel I got more experience. And I want to carry out business in a certain way that is maybe not the same as the way he wants to do this. And so I’ve never been married, I always say that was probably the worst divorce of my life. Because it’s hard, or your business becomes your baby. And finally, when I found my voice, when I was very ready to stand in my convictions, lead in a in a way that affirmed my values, is when I said you know, I think we should just basically shut this down and really separate and I can’t. And so that was I wouldn’t call it a mistake, because it took sure I made mistakes along the way. But I feel like it was me growing into myself and feeling more competent about my voice and feeling like even if I didn’t have experience in a certain way. I had the wherewithal and the better judgment and intuition at that point, to trust myself to make certain decisions. And I wanted to be happy I wanted if I was going to work that hard. I wanted to I wanted to give me joy and excitement again. And so yeah, I would say so. It was a series of mistakes along the way. But it ended up being one of the best lessons I’ve had in my life.

Dan Kuschell 14:31

And as you’re listening or watching right now, can you relate to what Mori is sharing with you? Right? Have you ever found yourself in a place where you know you were like newer in your industry, and yet you knew you have a lot of value, but maybe you downplayed it internally especially, you know, and had to deal with these types of adversities, the ups and downs and and it wearing you out being suffering from exhaustion or burnout or overwhelm right Only to then have that critical choice. What do you do? What do you do? And so you know, someone’s experiencing that Mori, you know, this, you know, call it this doubt this revaluation phase, you talked about living in your values, and maybe that’s the solution. Right? Well, what advice would you give to someone who might be downplaying their value? In a place of uncertainty, lack of confidence, kind of, like their version of what you describe for you for them? What advice would you give them to better negotiate for their future?

Mori Taheripour 15:35

I think we have to do what some of us have had a little bit more time to do during this pandemic, actually, which is, give ourselves adequate amount of time for self reflection on a regular basis, checking in with yourself, right. Entrepreneurship is hard, it’s hard. It’s you sort of feel like you’re in an island not to honor yourself anyway, right? Your friends and family members may not know what it’s like, but all the risks I was talking about the blood, sweat, and tears, the the amount of sort of grit they have to use to so day in and day out, the rescue have taken, you know, all those things. And so, first of all, forget even everything I just talked about just the daily routine, and the wear and tear on your body, your, your sort of your physical health, your mental health, your emotional health, if you don’t sort of take that time to sort of sit back and say, How am I doing? Right? Am I well, right? Why am I so tired all the time, or, you know, I’m not feeling like I’m waking up excited anymore, or my relationships around me are starting to suffer, right? That, that I don’t really necessarily believe in work life balance, because I think that to be in that constant state of balance is really almost impossible. I think that it’s a, there are certain things that take more priority at certain times. And you can see other things and then sort of vice versa. But it can’t be that one thing is always put to the side. And usually that’s things like our family, or maybe maybe again, our physical health, you stop working out because there’s no time you don’t get enough sleep. So I think that I would encourage everybody to on a regular basis, take that few minutes in the morning, in whatever time of the day works for you. And say, you know what, I’m just gonna give this I’m gonna give myself some space, check in with myself, how am I doing because if you are the machine, and you’re no longer working from the terms of like having enough gas in your tank, or, you know, the wherewithal to push forward, then none of it works, why everything sort of falls apart. So check in with yourself. And if it comes to the point where I ended up, which was, why is it that I’m not so happy? What is it that I can change? What is it that that needs re evaluation, then you address that. And some things are harder than others, like breaking up of relationships, partnerships, your business maybe. But it’s not impossible, what I think is much harder is to lose yourself, and and never to regain that place again. And one day you wake up and think what happened to my life, right? What did I do with it. And I think that’s actually that that kind of regret is so much worse than the the challenge of making hard decisions.

Dan Kuschell 18:24

And speaking of regret, I’m going to give a damaging confession here is in my early years of business, I had, you know, really operated my business Mori, more like a people pleaser, right. And you address this in your book too. And I’m just curious your take on it. And also, I found that a lot of entrepreneurs, the creative type entrepreneurs, majority, at least from our statistics and surveys with our groups, have found that most have fit into a people pleasing place. And so when you don’t like winning negotiator or the perception of winning, there’s this feeling of like I gave up everything, and resentment, and so on. So speak to you know, give us a glimpse of like how you, you you frame this in the book of like how to better show up, you know, more confidently, more powerfully more, with more authority yet at the same time authentic without feeling like we’re giving up? Or, like, you know, give giving up the best of ourselves?

Mori Taheripour 19:26

Yeah, that’s such a great question. And it turned out being one of the most probably popular chapters in my book was the chapters on pleasers and across gender, across ethnicities across I mean, the diversity of the people who give me feedback on this chapter is really incredible, because I think that just says exactly what you just express, which is so many of us fall in that category. And what I talked about in the book about pleasers and I inherently think this is really important for people to realize is that pleasers are are the quintessentially the people that want to avoid conflict, right? And that’s sort of at the heart of it. Right. And so there’s also this notion that negotiations, that that no, not every party can gain value at the same time, right. So there has to be been a winner and there has to be a loser. Right. And so, pleasers feel like they want to make other people happy. They want to protect their relationships, they want to avoid conflict. So they sort of take the backseat and sort of hand over the opportunity to their counterpart, be it a client, a spouse, like a child, whatever it is. And I actually the other day, think that this is the that pleasers have so many, so many strengths when it comes to negotiations, right? That at the heart of the pleaser is the person who’s really emotionally intelligent, and they’re very plugged into their counterpart, right. They want to know what their interests are, they pay attention their caregivers, they’re there. They they want to find ways to sort of problem solve, and, and figure out a way that this is going to work for for everybody, except the problem is that they forget themselves in the process. And by the way, they have great empathy. Or they know how to sort of step into some issues and understand that the maybe the burden that somebody is carrying, or the challenges that they’re having. So that’s quite powerful. But the problem is that pleasers have little empathy then for themselves. And what they do for other people, they generally don’t do for themselves. Because again, they think this is a win loss proposition, right? That you can’t be happy and somebody else can be happy at the same time. Right? That’s, that’s, those are not linked in a way that works. So by diminishing your own needs, by putting aside and and sort of undervaluing the things that you need to be for your happiness, or your interests, they think that this is what’s really saving the relationship or growing the relationship, right. But the end of day, it does exactly what you just talked about, which is, over time, when you give and give and give and give, you know, you’re you become depleted naturally. And it could either be burnout, or resentment for for your counterpart, right that, that in some way we make up in our heads that they’ve taken from us, but quite honestly, nobody takes anything we’re not willing to give. Alright, so yep. So it becomes this sort of, unfortunately, it’s a resentment that we’re that we sort of displayed towards our counterpart, and even ourselves, right, we feel like why did I know better? Why didn’t I do better. And either way, that’s just a negative feeling to carry, right? And, and then there’s the feeling of regret, that that you didn’t do anything about it, which sort of stays with you. Over time, right? Regret is a very hard feeling to shake. And those things are all there because you thought that in order to make the world a better place, make your counterparts happy, make your partners happy, that you couldn’t be happy to. And I think that if if pleasers because again, they have the foundation of being an extraordinary negotiation negotiators. If they could just first do what they do for other people for themselves. for themselves, when you’re planning, you think about your own goals, you think about your boundaries, you think about the things that are non negotiable. It’s like putting on your oxygen mask first. So you can help others right, I think then, once you bring that into the fold, then I think pleasers have the opportunity to be so successful in their negotiations and in life. Just due to self love, is is necessary, right self care is is a must. And those things can actually coexist. You can be happy and others can be happy and find a happy medium. But you can’t forget yourself. You can’t leave yourself out of the decision.

Quite honestly, nobody takes anything we're not willing to give. - Mori Taheripour Click To Tweet

Dan Kuschell 24:03

And as you’re watching or listening right now, like what would happen if you were to give yourself greater self love, greater self care, to get more clarity around healthy boundaries for you first, put your oxygen max mask on first to decide what you really want, what are your core values and then be able to show up in the highest? How would it shift the game for you? Not just in life, not in business? But in everything you do? How you do anything? is how you do everything. And would it be worth to get the peace of mind to be able to show up more confident with more purpose with more passion behind what you’re doing because you’re a better negotiator of you at the end of the day and I would encourage you go get Mori’s book at Bring Yourself: How to Harness the Power of Connection to Negotiate Fearlessly. now You talk a lot about connection. And how it plays a role Mori in negotiating. So speak to that a little bit, give us a glance.

Mori Taheripour 25:10

Yeah, so I believe at the end of the day, it’s humanity is the essence of all negotiations. And you know, so even when you’re negotiating with yourself, right, but the best way to make great decisions is to understand all the elements that go into that. So to be perfectly informed. And then think about the types of goals that you want to set for yourself out of that conversation. And inherently, what will make you satisfied, right, and, and so that comes with your own personal decision making, when you’re negotiating with yourself, which I talked about a lot, you have to be very self aware, right? And be really connected to yourself, right. So again, I talked about giving yourself space to do that, that’s really important when you’re negotiating with other people, the ability to make connections, and be it even something as transactional, as a as a car purchase, home purchase, or, you know, longer term negotiations with your suppliers and vendors and customers. At the end of the day, there’s human beings involved in this right. And so if we can commit ourselves to being curious about people to being interested in people to finding affiliation with people connectivity, and whether it’s you’re in the same fraternity in college, or your kids are about to go to the same school or you enjoy a certain hobby, when you find things that build those inroads that build those connections to people, then I always say that any even one term to go one time negotiation, something you think is is only for the hearing now, you can almost immediately flip to something that will pay back itself in perpetuity, right? So the car sales I talked about, if you get a really great deal, because you’ve sort of built this connection to somebody I’m not talking about, like now you’re inviting them to your house for Thanksgiving, I’m just saying, kindness, right? Respect, humanity, right? When that comes into the conversation, then maybe they’ll give you the better deal. Or maybe when you can bring other people because you had such a great experience, then all of a sudden that that comes back to you in other ways. And, and we don’t have to give to receive necessarily, right that that’s not what I’m talking about here. I’m just talking about the fact that that people want to be seen. People want to feel important. People want to feel respected, people want to hear be heard. And that’s not a lot to give to someone that’s that’s a that should be a fairly easy gift. And then what you receive in return is maybe just maybe that better deal, but maybe a relationship, the ability to connect to somebody on a day you really need it most what everything is not going well. But that Starbucks barista. You ask them how they’re doing, and all of a sudden they smile, and you’ve connected, even in that moment, there’s there’s joy, and there’s there’s something to be gained by that. So it’s humanity, its connections, and I can’t think of any other way to do this. If you sort of take all of that away and leave it as like a skeleton of a transaction. There’s no there’s, you know, those one term negotiations one time short term negotiations will always remain that there’s no way to benefit in the long term. And

I believe, at the end of the day, humanity is the essence of all negotiations. - Mori Taheripour Click To Tweet

Dan Kuschell 28:53

speaking of long term, like, how would it impact you, your life, your business, if you go beyond transactions, right. And here’s a simple fun exercise to think about doing today, like literally today or tomorrow or in the next couple of days. The next time you’re out, you know, at Starbucks, or the next time you’re out at a restaurant or the next time you’re out in a service environment. And you know what happens? We walk into the place and you exchange, how are you? I’m good, I’m good. How are you? I’m good. I’m good. I’m good. Like, go beyond the surface. And I would encourage you, the next time that happens is stop that person and go No, seriously. What’s the best thing about your day to day, you will be amazed at how you create a transformation, not just a connection, but a transformation in somebody to bring them a smile to bring them bring them joy, to be heard, to be listened to to be cared for. Right? It’s a fun experiment to do. And I encourage you not just do once you do it once and you see what it brings them which will be a gift back to you. You’ll probably never not do it for the rest of your life. I encourage you take that. Step, test this out, because when you become that mirror for others, it’s amazing what it does for you. On the other side, right? Talking about negotiating with yourself.

Mori Taheripour 30:12

Yes, you just said something really interesting because you’ve framed it in the form of a question. And that’s really the hardest. That’s right. As you were saying it, I was like it that’s like that. That’s that natural curiosity, if you could just be more curious and not be so judgmental. It’s, it’ll make you a better negotiator. It’ll make you a better friend, it’ll make you a better co worker and make you a better leader. But just that curiosity is amazing how much we think we know. And yet how little we do, right? That the humility that we don’t have, but if you do that, and that becomes this part of just your DNA, that it’s easier to even do what you just talked about, right? That becomes natural. You want to know about somebody you want to know how their day is calling, you want to know if they’re in a bad mood, like what’s causing this. Like, there’s, there’s really so much to learn every single day from people that we meet interact with, that, you know, why why take that opportunity away from ourselves, right. So it just I’m sorry to interrupt, but it just hit me like you went immediately to a question. And I think that’s really, that’s a great practice. That’s a great thing to do and sort of implement quickly.

If you could just be more curious and not be so judgmental, it'll make you a better negotiator. It'll make you a better friend. It'll make you a better co-worker. It’ll make you a better leader. - Mori Taheripour Click To Tweet

Dan Kuschell 31:24

Yeah, you know, I think my kids have taught me this at the deepest level Mori, you know, My son is now 13, and my daughter’s 15. And my son is just since he’s been like, I don’t know, five years old. He’s always like, why this Dad? And what about this data? And it got me to rethink all kinds of stuff, you know. So that’s a personal thing where you can just go out today. And you’ll do that in another one, like, how many of us have been at networking meetings Mori, where we are asked to do our elevator pitch, like, what do you or you meet somebody and they go, what do you do? Right? And again, it’s very surface level. Well, what if you turn that into a question? Instead of just give them a response? And what it does is it creates a true interaction, not just a response, or someone’s on the other end waiting their turn to tell you, right? Like, for example, next time you’re out somewhere, go, you know, and you’re asked like, what do you do? Flip your whatever you do and do a question and go, Well, do you know how? You know, I’ll do my best to summarize Mori here? Well, do you know how a lot of people think negotiation is about winning, or losing, and sometimes feel a little icky about it? Well, and they go, Well, yeah, like everybody kind of feels that way about negotiating. Right? And that’s what they’re feeling on the inside. But just because you asked a question. Now, obviously can’t ask any question, right? As you’re listening or watching but think of your business or think or whatever it is, you do? Turn it into a question that would likely be something that would benefit somebody. And likely you’ll have a lot of people. Yeah, yeah. Now go into what you do. And you’ve got more of a true connection. Right? It’s being curious. It’s been curious. Man, there’s so much we’ve covered here, there’s so much more I want to cover with you, Mori. Let’s start with this. I mean, you’ve given us a glimpse of you know where you’re at? Yeah, I mean, you’ve had all kinds of results with all these amazing companies and athletes and, you know, big, exact small business owners and everything in between, can you think of like a favorite recent example or story of someone that, you know, you worked with? And like before working with you, they were struggling with negotiating, and now they’ve, you know, kind of adopted, you know, all the things you’ve talked about and more today? And what happened for them? Can you share that? I’d love it love to just get that perspective.

Mori Taheripour 33:40

Yeah. I feel like that’s the gift I have all the time. Specially in different ways. My audiences are so different. But I would say that I teach negotiations for the Goldman Sachs’ 10,000 small businesses program that I teach in 11 cities. And so I see a variety of entrepreneurs and small business owners in different industries and what have you. And I can’t even say that there’s just one example because what I get from almost every class and my classes are long, so you know, four hours later, I literally see transformation right in front of my eyes. And they’re emotional. You know, we cry in class, we laugh in class, it’s, it’s all those things. I mean, people listening are probably like, negotiating. But the class where I teach is more like therapy in some ways, right? Because we do that deep dive and looking at yourself and, and really thinking about sort of taking a step back and think about why you make the decisions that you make, why you treat people the way you do, why you don’t treat yourself better, you know? And, you know, if I was to say one, one example, like most recently, probably I taught a class in Baltimore. And one of my students is actually trained attorney. And she does a lot of advocacy work on behalf of children and what have you. So, you know, that’s sort of the legal perspective, the approach to all things negotiations, attach advocacy to that she’s a fighter, right? she is, she was gung ho, like she leaned into that, or Roche’s. Let me claim, you know, an outcome that works for my client on behalf of my client. And brilliant. So that’s the sort of perspective she had coming into the class, we do exercises, so they actually do sort of real time negotiations. And after that exercise, you know, she crushed her opponent, like, literally crushed. So and she thought, you know, this was so great. And I sort of asked her to see her opponent her counterpart, right and see that her classmate that she had just had this negotiations with, and really see the fact that how maybe unhappy the other person was with the outcome, but that what happens to the other side. And the that the value placed in understanding or re evaluating what, I don’t use this term very often in my class, but winning really is, is it short term? Do you want a long term relationship? How important is that the way people see you or remember you, right? And yet, you can still do really well, if you do all that. But maybe you can maybe just maybe you can even do better, right? There was there was a different way to approach this and transformative experience for her transformative. And well, I think what she realized was that there is room for more than one, that there is this notion of fundamentally looking at things from a growth opportunity, as opposed to taking your share or taking your slice, which sort of creates scarcity in a lot of ways. And it was, and like I said, I’m so blessed. And I’m so grateful, because I love what I do, because I see these transformations in a four hour period. And it’s amazing. And she thinks it this is gonna make her a better business owner or leader. Yeah, and that worker relationships, because it changed the way she saw herself. But she didn’t have to be the person who had all the hard edges, but that the softer edges where she actually felt most comfortable. She was it was a pretence anymore, right? she sort of stepped in the place where she was really felt like she was herself. Those were the softer edges, and yet the outcomes were going to be even better maybe. So it’s, it’s really interesting. It’s see it’s you see it in front of your eyes. And I’m like, this is the best job ever. It’s fantastic that people can see themselves in a different way, and run with it and feel like they’re being more authentic.

Dan Kuschell 38:07

And if you’re looking for a way to be more authentic, I want to encourage you go get bring yourself how to harness the power of connection and negotiate fearlessly. I mean, there’s so much here, Mori. That was amazing. I mean, I’m just thinking of myself, and how many of these types of examples of clients and so on, if someone’s inspired by what we’ve been talking about, and again, this is just a glimpse of some of the work that you do? Where can people learn more about you get the book? Where can they where can they get access to you.

Mori Taheripour 38:36

So I’m on just about every social media but minus Tik Tok, I haven’t really gone into that frontier yet. So my Instagram account, Twitter, and LinkedIn and my book is on every place you can buy a book online, so Amazon and Barnes and Nobles and, and just type in my and that’s my website, and that’ll give you all the information you need. And just even, that’ll take you to my site inherently anyway, so so it’s all over the place, very easy to get. And all they have to do is figure out how to spell my last name.

Dan Kuschell 39:15

And by the way, we’ll have all the show links, all the show notes, all the links to her social media, access to her book at We’ll also get her link to her main website that’ll be here you can come back to this episode of, that’s Now, as we wind down Mori, like, What’s something I should have asked you that we just hadn’t had time to get to yet?

Mori Taheripour 39:42

What should you have asked me that we haven’t had time to do yet. Um, that’s a really great question. Nobody ever asks that. I would, I would maybe just say what I would leave people with today. So in this space on this Friday, as life is actually passing us by really quickly, I can’t believe it’s the 11th of June already, but raising it just just here today, right now what I’m thinking for people and so I really love this conversation, it’s always nice when it’s a conversation and not quote, unquote, interview necessarily, and all the experience, damn that you bring into this, but I’ll say my word, I’d love to hear from you as well on this, but I feel like we’ve come, we’ve made it through so much, right, we’ve we’ve spent a year plus of challenges and grief and, and a lot of maybe even great memories where parents have had their kids home that they never thought they were gonna have at home again, and spending that time with them. But maybe just reflecting back and thinking that we have the opportunity to reset every day. And think about the future in a way that maybe is different than yesterday, because we’ve grown in a in even that process, what you want your everyday to be like, right and and I feel like for the last year plus, and this has been maybe a part of who I am. But I feel like I’ve learned more and more the importance of of empathy and kindness. How what you give to the world, you get back. And it’s, it’s so important to treat people in the way that that makes them feel seen and heard. That that’s been really the gift of this year and a half for me, I felt so connected to other authors who may have launched their book during this time to, to people that have lost lost loved ones because I have to not isolate during this pandemic, but but losses that I’ve had over the years, to people who are celebrating their friendships and their joy, you know, and just the kindness that you expect you extend to people. I think today, I just want to sort of step in that I want to stay there. Because I think it’s really important. What would you say, Dan? What do you want to leave? Today? What?

What you give to the world, you get back. And it's so important to treat people in a way that makes them feel seen and heard. - Mori Taheripour Click To Tweet

Dan Kuschell 42:14

Well, as you’re watching or listening right now, how would your personal life and your business life be transformed with more empathy, more kindness, more self care, more self love, showing up? And being curious and fascinated, right? And then being selfish enough, so that you can actually be selfless with others? by tuning into, like you. Right tuning into you have like, what are your real wants? Like, what do you want? You know, who are you? What do you stand for? Right? When you get that kind of clarity, which, you know, mores done an amazing job in such a short period of time to just give you some Nuggets to walk away with to get get that clarity. How would your life be transformed, not just in negotiating, but as a, as a spouse, as a parent, as a friend, as a leader, as an executive. Ideally, whatever it is for you is a game changer. Right? That’s what I’d leave you with today. Love that. Wow, that’s powerful. That’s powerful. I got I got chills on the back of my neck not to sound corny, but it is what it is. And you know, as you’re listening, or you’re watching right now, I encourage you, number one, come back to this episode. There’s so much wisdom that Mori shared with you, you can do that at, that’s I would encourage you to go get her book, check out what she’s doing. You can go to,, you can also go to her website. Again, all the links will be here in the show notes as well. And take action with what more is shared with you give yourself that gift go out be more curious, you know, outdated. Traditional negotiation is outdated, traditional, traditional negotiating tactics, techniques, one liners, that’s outdated. That’s the thing of the past. I mean, if you want to keep doing it, keep going for it. But if you want to be show up more confidently more genuine, more authentic, to truly build connections, long lasting relationships, where everyone has a better way as a result of coming in connection with you. And start applying what Mori has been sharing with you. Seize the day. Make it a great week. We’ll see you next time on Thank you. Thanks for listening to this episode of Are you struggling to get a steady flow of new clients every day, or maybe hit a plateau or hit a wall and growing your business? Let’s help you solve this problem today. Let’s review your business and have a conversation. You can do that for free today at That’s In addition, if you’re looking for a simple way to implement some of what we’ve been talking about in today’s episode, I want to encourage you to get our free small business toolkit. You get that at, that’s If you’d like access to the special resources and all the show notes for this special episode, make sure to visit

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