The Kyoto 2011 team was able to finish theLeipzig Graduate School of Management’s “The Negotiation Challenge” with honors for their ability in the last and most complex negotiation. The Kyototeam did not finish in the finals, however the team found satisfaction in applyingcreativity and negotiation skills throughout the two day program. All three students were able to build their experience, knowledge, skills, and contacts.

What the team gained

Experience – the team gained experience in dealing with multicultural counterparties in quick moving exchanges with a variety of accents and voices.

Self confidence – managing complex issues in fast paced situations made the team increasingly confident as they progressed.

Contacts – interacting with students and working professionals created new contacts and understanding for the students. Students at TNC came from Germany, USA, France, India, Ghana, Iceland, Norway, and many other countries.

Fluency – speaking and listening throughout the event made the students more fluent in English.

Teamwork – working together made the team members aware of how to construct and coordinate a team.

Kyoto 2011 team members

Team Captain: law student Thitirat Thipramsitkul, a veteran of the INC competition in December 2010.

Chou Tou (張騰) MBA student and veteran of the INC competition in December 2010.

Doris Yang (楊青) MBA student.

All students were selected based on their interest and ability as expressed in a brief essay. These most promising students were chosen from among all the applicants.


The students willingly and actively completed a long and complex course of preparation including practices of negotiation and preparation. The preparation was led by Associate Professor Will Baber, Kyoto University Graduate School of Management (准教授、京都大学大学院経営管理).

The students worked with the coach frequently before the event including one meeting in December, three in January, five in February, and four in March averaging 2 hours each for a total of 26 hours of practice, discussion and planning. Additionally we practiced on the plane travelling to Leipzig and in Leipzig before the event. We were kindly joined in practices once by Mr. Kosuga (law student) and several times by Ms. Linda Lee, business person, and Dr. Inga Polec, a Kyoto University post-doc student.

Our practices included preparing for negotiation cases under time pressure (20 minutes) and full negotiations of practice cases.

In summary, the Kyoto students spent many hours in practices than students in a normal 15 week course and they contributed serious effort and ability.

At the event

There was very little information about the four challenges in advance so we prepared as best we could by learning how to:

-   analyze quickly,

-   plan quickly,

-   speak effectively,

-   pursue key issues,

-   break deadlocks,

-   propose ideas, and

-   concede only what is necessary.

Rounds 1-3

The first three rounds were largely distributive emphasizing the ability to claim value rather than the ability to create value and build relationships. These were difficult for us because our approach to negotiation insists that success demands integration of issues and relationships which encourage generation of new value.

Round 4

A complex integrative negotiation. The Kyoto team excelled here gaining 11 of 12 possible points.This is the sort of negotiation the Kyoto team was best prepared for. The case was relatively complex involving costs, miscommunications, personal feelings, and long term relationships. Kyoto’s situation was made more difficult by dealing with a counterparty that seemed inexperienced in managing such complex material.

The team was perfectly able to manage the material, make complex proposals, and link issues creatively. Additionally, the team was able to educate the less experienced team and overcome their worries and defensiveness to achieve a conclusion. When the judges convened to discuss the results, it became clear that Kyoto had exceeded the expectations of the judges and the abilities other teams.

Final event

Unfortunately, Kyoto’s strong results in the 4th event did not quite qualify it for the final event. The final event was played out between the team from Iceland and the team from Poland, with the Polish team winning.


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Teamwork in action: evaluating a practice in Leipzig. March 10, 2011. Doris Yang and Titi Thipramsitkul

Team and coach reviewing outcomes of a practice prior to the competition. Yang, Chou, Thipramsitkuland Baber

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Doris Yang with Iceland’s Reykjavik University and Hamburg Bucerius Law School reps, Round 3 Kyoto team negotiating with IESEG (France), Round 1. Thipramsitkul and Yang





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