BASED ON THE FEEDBACK BELOW AND THE ATTACHED VIDEO CONFERENCE YOU WILL BE WRITING YOUR “FEEDBACK THOUGHTS” ON THE FOLLOWING:
TOPIC 1: Japan Negotiation Performance (3 PARAGRAPHS and SOME BULLET POINTS)
TOPIC 2: Japan lessons learned (3 PARAGRAPHS)
VIDEO CONFERENCE LINK:
First of all, good job overall. The negotiation outcome is much more favorable to the US team, but still within an acceptable range for Japan. So the main goal was achieved.
I will summarize the positives and negatives of your performance below.
-Your team was able to complete the task successfully, despite working on a shorter deadline, due to the reschedule. This is a challenge that I will take into account when grading, to your credit;
-Your team and the other team were able to put together a protocol and script that carried us through;
-You agreed to extremely favorable terms for the USA, but the devil is in the details: you did not commit to any timeline, only a deadline. So the Japanese government could now do nothing for 8 years, and as long as they increase their import quota to 22% one hour before the 8 years are up, technically they fulfilled their commitment. Whereas what the USA Team really wanted is a gradual opening of the market every year leading up to the deadline. But they overlooked this critical part of the deal. Of course, there was no reason for you to bring it up and force yourselves to commit to a timeline. It was their loss, and your gain. Honestly, I have no way of tellingwhether you were conscious of this “gift” when the deal was made, but the fact remains that no timeline in the present deal is much better for Japan than having a timeline.
-Your team did not follow through with the commitment stated in the negotiation protocol to provide an initial offer (“First Offer will be available for viewing/amending via Google Doc, provided prior to negotiation”, in the Protocol document). So there is a penalty for not fulfilling this commitment to the other team;
-Your team was not prepared enough. This led to two big problems. The first problem was when Team USA “showed their cards” too much with the initial offer they shared with you. They placed themselves in a position that your team should have taken advantage of by offering them the least favorable terms they listed. E.g. why would you be willing to accept their initial offer of 15% over 5 years (or even 15% over 8 years after some back and forth), if they state in the same document that they would be willing to accept 15% over 10 years? And yet, you agreed to 22% over 8 years. It is not logical to offer better terms than what you know for a fact the other side would be willing to accept as their least favorable terms. It would be like a car salesman offering to sell a car for 20K and you reply back “no, I will pay 22K”. Huh?
-Due to lack of preparation, the second problem is that you were only able to bring up the % of import quota and the timeline as the only parameters of the negotiation package. Actually, there were other aspects to take into account (as pointed out in the required readings), such as whether the imported rice would be for human consumption or not. And also whether the imports within the quota would remain duty free. When Team USA raised the question of whether the rice import quotas would be for human consumption or animal feed, your team had no idea what to respond, so you did not really know what you were saying yes to. This point was actually the most controversial part of the deal. Right now less than 10% of foreign rice imports go to human consumption in Japan. Almost all imports end up either as animal feed or as humanitarian donations from the Japanese government to developing countries facing famine. So accepting to go from less than 10% to 94% is a stunningly high number that is really not going to happen for decades in actuality. You should never have accepted this number. The other parameter you never brought up was whether rice imports within the quota would remain duty free, or whether a duty tax would be levied. This would have been a way to finance subsidies to the Japanese farmers: they would have faced more foreign competition (at a higher price point due to the duty), but the government could have supported them financially with the extra tax revenues.
-Negotiation style: Having researched the Japanese negotiation style and their business etiquette, you knew that you should avoid confrontation and public shaming. You should have been very polite throughout discussions, even when disagreeing. So Sean’s statement “in the past, you have offended us” was much too blunt. No Japanese delegation would have ever done that.
Overall, your performance was acceptable, but would have benefited from more preparation.
At this point, per the syllabus,
“Group Negotiation: Final Presentation and PowerPoint. PowerPoint Presentation on Strategy, Learnings, Reflections. This is a Team-graded report. (Note: although your negotiation session in Week 4 was not graded, how you did will be reflected in faculty comments) “
So your performance WILL be incorporated into your Presentation grade next week, not graded separately. But I want to be clear that if this performance was graded in and of itself, I would have given it 85%, taking everything into account. I can’t know how good your presentation next week will be, so your actual team grade on the negotiation may still be higher or lower that 85. It will depend on your presentation next week.
I hope this feedback will help you prepare your presentation. I will share the video recording link to last night’s session as soon as the upload is completed later today.
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