The Conscience Code: How to Lead with Your Values
The Conscience Code: How to Lead with Your Values
How do you negotiate with your values in your organization? How do you learn to recognize the values that are important to others and let them guide your actions? How do you balance integrity with a successful career? These are just a few of the questions that Professor and Author G. Richard Shell answers in this fascinating episode of the Negotiations Ninja podcast!
Mark: Welcome to the Negotiations Ninja Podcast, where we develop and deliver the most engaging negotiation content and training in the world. We host negotiation experts, business people, and entrepreneurs, and discuss what works, what doesn't work and how we can improve our negotiation skills. Hello Negotiations Ninja listeners. This is Mark from the Negotiations Ninja Podcast. Today we have Richard Shell on the show to talk all about his new book, The Conscience Code, which is all about leading with your values and negotiating based on your values. Very, very interesting work. I loved his work around the Bargaining for Advantage book that he did back in the nineties. Now he is sort of culminating the top of this series with The Conscience Code, and there's about four books that I recommended of his that you pick up. Very, very interesting interview. I'm sure you're going to love it. Take good notes. Let me know what you think. Good day, Richard, how are you?
Richard Shell: I'm fine, Mark. Thanks for having me on your show.
Mark: Thank you so much for being here, man. I'm really excited to get into a discussion with you, but before we do, maybe you could tell the listeners a bit about who you are and what you do.
Richard Shell: Sure, thanks. I'm a senior professor at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. Depending on which poll you follow where either number one, number two, or number three in the world in business schools. I am the chair of the Department of Legal Studies and Business Ethics, which is the largest group of its kind at any business school in the world. We have a group of lawyers, we have some folks who specialize in ethics and also we are the main teacher of the negotiation class, which is the most popular elective in both our undergrad and our MBA programs. And I have been in the field for decades. I've got a number of close friends who've been on your show. Mike Wheeler, for example, at the Harvard Business School and I kind of collaborated for years, ran a conference together on online negotiations and electronic software systems and negotiations up at the Program on Negotiation. And I've written a number of articles in the Negotiation Journal commenting on work by people like Bob Manoukian who's now the... Took over from Roger Fisher as the head of the Program on Negotiation and also Marty Latz, who was most recently the author of a book on Trump style of negotiation. So it's just a thrill to be with that Negotiation Ninja.
Mark: Well, thank you. I appreciate that. I don't know if I can hold a candle to any of my guests. I certainly get the opportunity to stand on the shoulders of giants. And I'm just glad that we have you here as one of those people today. So as a follower of negotiation, I've been sort of following your work for some time and it appears from starting with Bargaining for Advantage to The Art of Woo, to Springboard, now with your new book, The Conscience Code, there seems to be almost an evolution in how you're showing your work. Can you walk us through that and give us an idea of that and have I got it right, basically?
Richard Shell: Yeah absolutely. I think every book I've written has been a footnote in the book before. So it's something that I felt needed to be explored further, but that book I was working on didn't have enough space really for me to explore that and keep the focus on what it was. So my first book Bargaining for Advantage was written over 25 years ago. It came out of my Executive Negotiating workshop, which I run three or four times a year at Wharton for global executives. And really was my focus on that workshop. And on what I learned from the executives that attended it and my attempt to sort of bring really the subject of personality and bargaining styles and the differences between people to the negotiation subject. That had been something that was really missing. I thought from the literature, I was pretty much all tactical, whether they were win- win or win- lose, it didn't have any treatment of which people can use which tactics. So that book sort of gave me a chance to push on that. But then what I realized was negotiation is nested inside two other subjects and really you can't negotiate without treating those subjects. So the other two subjects are influence and persuasion. You can negotiate without influencing other people and you can negotiate without persuading them. But there is a difference between persuasion and negotiation, which many people miss. A favorite thing for negotiation guru has to say is," Everything is a negotiation." But actually everything is not in negotiation. And if you want to have a good relationship with your spouse, it's a really good attitude to adopt because otherwise you're going to find yourself having more conflicts than you need.
Mark: I would agree with that, yeah.
Richard Shell: So I think persuasion is making the case for something that is cognitive. You're trying to change someone's mind about something. You're trying to introduce an idea or advance some initiative. Negotiation is persuasion in the face of scarcity. So when there's nothing to allocate, if you're just trying to figure out whether Pluto has an extra moon, you persuade people with the data, with the arguments, with the evidence, but you're really not negotiating over Pluto's moons. You're persuading them. And when you're in negotiation, you're also persuading. Part of it is pure persuasion. You're trying to introduce arguments related to fairness or to predictions about the future. You can persuade someone about their interests, for example, and actually illuminate their own views on their own interests. That's an idea, it's a thought. But the actual negotiation part, the part that makes it unique is the allocation. Who's going to get what share of the scarce thing. And that's where the tension comes. And it's also where the emotions come. So when you map these three processes, influence, persuasion, negotiation, you're really mapping credibility at the influence level, arguments and evidence and cognitive processing at the second level. And at the negotiation level, you're processing emotions, basically emotions related to desire and fear. Those are the two essence. So my next book was about persuasion and influence. And so I needed to complete circle then illuminating both of those books was a sort of... I'm a big believer in know yourself. And that's why the marketing book took the form it did. And the persuasion book had personality assessments in it, too. And so my next book was actually, okay, well, negotiation and persuasion helps you achieve goals, but what goals are worth achieving? And so the next book was called Springboard: Launching Your Personal Search for Success. And that was a book about investigating introspecting your own personal long- term goals. So in a profound way, you understand what your interests are and you understand what your priorities are. And so you're not negotiating for something you don't want, really, if you know better what your real authentic passions are. And if you can bring that to work, then you can have the magic sweet spot of doing work that you love, doing work that pays, and doing work that you're good at. I mean, that's sort of what that, book's about, how to find that place, where all three of those things are happening at once. But then in that book, I couldn't find room to treat was this really important subject of values, and you've got your long- term goal straight, but you run into someone who is violating your premise of right and wrong. And if you're going to be an authentic person, if you're going to stay coherent and integrated as a person at work, you need some understanding of how to manage these really important identity shaping conflicts that come up when people ask you to do something that violate your moral code. And you might think, well, this doesn't have very often, the ordinary workweek doesn't really have a lot of moral crises in it, but it happens more often than we know and think. A lot of it we avoid and just sort of say, well, not my pay grade. Well, we'll let someone else think about it, but I'll give you an example of why it matters that you think about what you're doing and the values that you have. So this last book comes out of a course I teach on negotiation... It's not negotiations, it's called responsibility. And so it really is a way... It's a kind of leadership book in that respect, how to be an effective leader for values. So I had this student who got out of college and it's an MBA course so all my students have had jobs after college. And she found a job in the credit card industry and a perfectly honorable pursuit to work for a credit card company. And we all use plastic and it's pretty pervasive. And so she was happy. She was in marketing, she was doing the thing she was good at. But then one day there was some initiative at the firm that required her to go down to the call center and listen in on the calls that the firm was having people make to try to get poor people to raise their credit limit because the firm needed some additional market share or they wanted to get some extra interest income or whatever the reason was, and who do they target? They targeted the people who can afford that the least, because they're the ones most desperate to have additional credit. And so she spent all day listening to these calls where these people were reading really high pressure scripts to get people who shouldn't increase their credit to do it so the firm could make more money. And she was in a sense looking at how the sausage was made. And she finished that day and she thought about what was going on. And she realized it totally ran against her values. She just couldn't stomach the idea that she was actually working to support the marketing of a company that would have that as its business model. And so she realized it was way above her pay grade to change the business model of MasterCard. So she just had to leave the industry and get another job doing something that she felt was more aligned to her values. And so I think a lot of what I'm talking about in this book, The Conscience Code is if you want to be truly successful then you have to be true to your values at work just the same as you are at home. And that takes skill in negotiation, influence, and persuasion applied to this context and self- awareness, which is the theme of everything I've written and then be alert. When the boss says," Don't worry about it, the data is incomplete, but the client will never read the appendix." You're actually called to ask yourself, well, what would a person of conscience do in this situation? And how would I feel if I were the client getting shoddy data that I paid a huge amount of money for from this firm and they're hiding it. And you face it, then you realize, maybe it's a small thing, maybe the pressure's on and it's above my pay grade, but I think it's my duty to try to do this right, rather than just do what someone wants and investigate the strategy that might enable you to be effective as a person of conscience, bring your values to work every day.
Mark: Love it. I love the evolution of your work. I love that you've worked on everything from influence, persuasion, negotiation, and a lot of people, I feel like this is the part that you're touching on now with The Conscience Code, this is the part that they don't necessarily consider. And they don't necessarily consider the implications of it. Oftentimes we get into negotiation situations where the person we're negotiating with may not necessarily hold the same values as we hold. They may believe in different degrees of right and wrong. Because it's not always clear, it's not always binary. So now we're negotiating with someone that may not necessarily have the same values as us. And if we get into that kind of a situation, first of all, how are we even to know? How are we to know whether or not they hold the same values?
Richard Shell: Well, there's a wonderful book by a guy named Epley, who's a Chicago professor at the business school there. It's called Mindwise. And it's about how to read other people, how to read their minds. And nine chapters. He talks about how difficult and impossible it is to read someone else's mind. And then the final chapter, he says the answer and the big reveal is, well, if you want to find out what's thinking or feeling, you have to ask them. And so it takes... Social science is really good at identifying problems sometimes the answer is you already knew the answer. It's like gratitude makes you feel better. But I think that the, you don't know, I think that there certainly are going to be lots of differences that have to do with culture, that have to do with different backgrounds, different assumptions about what's going on and training that might've been provided about what's normal. There's just inputs, infinite inputs, maybe you're raised by mother who loved to haggle in the New Delhi market. And now you're an American executive in New York. And so you've got this role model of someone who haggles in a New Delhi market, and you're bringing that to the table. And the other party can't possibly know that they're negotiating with your mother. It's not in there, but what I think happens is it leaks. And so you suddenly discover the other guy's bluffing or the other one's unwilling to tell you something when you ask for evidence about some assertion. And so you're kind of now suspicious that maybe you're not getting the full story. The risk is that you'll become very self- righteous about it. And you'll say," Oh, well, they don't have my values, they're a bad person. And this is unethical. This is illegal, this is evidence of bad character." And then you do something silly that's against your own interests because you're not behaving skillfully in the frame of the other person. The part of The Conscience Code, that's a classic problem at where your values are tested. Just because someone else is buffing doesn't require you to bluff. A person of conscience doesn't start shoplifting because other people in the store are shoplifting. So then the question is, okay, how do you skillfully manage that? And in the bluffing example, I think the artful way of trying to deal with it is to share your perceptions, that the information isn't as clear as it could be, and that you found, you've tried to be as candid and transparent as possible, but you found that most deals work better when there's a measure of trust. And you'd like to know what the other person, what their ideas are on how you could build a better trusting environment in this discussion so that you could be more transparent. So you don't accuse them of bluffing, you don't accuse them of lying. You show them a joint goal. How can we get to a better place so that we can find more value? And then you add, we can do that. If we're more transparent, which is a skillful thing to do. And then you ask for their suggestions. And I think one of the beauties of being someone who's more aware of negotiation moves and more committed to their values is that they are less inclined to mimic the behavior of the other party and more inclined to take a leadership role in the process because their values are non- negotiable. I like to say you should compromise everything in a negotiation but your principles. And as long as you're really clear about that, then you've got a constraint. Negotiation is a big constraint analysis. Say, what's possible, what's impossible. And now you've got some boundaries of impossible. Now you can work within the realm of the possible, and of course, try to stretch the boundaries so that they include more of the impossible than you realize by investigating. But values are non- negotiable. That's what I would advise. And then once you have that non- negotiable boundary, then you negotiate around that constraint. So, and you have to negotiate a little bit for both sides to get to a process that you're going to feel that you can be your best in. Now, if they have all the leverage and so you're just dealing with somebody who is a poker player and they've got all the cards, then I think you still don't compromise your standards. You just do the best you can to improve your leverage. And if there's no way to improve your leverage, then you take what you can get. And you try to not repeat the experience. I'm a realist.
Mark: Yeah, this is the part that I think a lot of people struggle with. And this is the issue that I have because I consider negotiation very much a spectrum, like on one side of the table, you've got the sort of Program on Negotiation, Getting to Yes style negotiation. And on the other side, you've got the Start With No, Jim Camp, Chris Voss style. And there's a spectrum. And not to say that either side is better than the other, they've all got tools that you should be using. And one thing that you said there, I think is so often ignored in modern negotiation literature, which is leverage. And so many people ignore the development of leverage in negotiation. And I know he's a polarizing figure, but you and I have had a private conversation about him is Donald Trump. He doesn't have a broad range of tools available to him. But one thing that he is good at doing is the development of leverage. But for a lot of people tying this back into your existing conversation about values, when they see that being used at that scale, there's a conflict that exists with a lot of people where they're like, I'm not sure that this aligns with my quote unquote values of what I like to see. And that's where that internal conflict and negotiation exists. What do you think about that?
Richard Shell: Yeah. Well, first of all, I think when I say values, I don't mean my values and I'm in Bargaining for Advantage I talk about the three legitimate schools I think of ethical negotiation. One is competitive, one is idealistic, and one is pragmatic. And I think you can be a competitive negotiator. And if you're in a market where bluffing is common people expect it, there's no violation of values when you're bluffing in a market in Nassau for a straw hat.
Mark: Because that's the market-
Richard Shell: That's the way it works.
Mark: That's the industry. Those are the values that exist in that... Yes, exactly.
Richard Shell: Yeah, it's not only that, it's fun and it's playful. It's not a grim process. And so, I myself try to be an idealist and so that's why I say whatever your principles are they're non- negotiable. Because even someone who's a competitive negotiator will have a place where it's against their values to deal from the bottom of the deck and to commit actionable fraud. And so for them they're competitive. They have a range of competitive tools that include things that other people might think are unethical if they did it. But I think you have to just be aware of the fact that different people have different values. That's part of the human circus that we're part of, but I think whatever your values are, then the question is okay, be true to them. And if there's a conflict between the way you negotiate and the values you use, and the way other negotiate the values they use, then it's probably helpful if you can identify it and try to minimize it, and not let it get in the way where you suddenly attribute evil character to someone who's different than you are, who approaches it differently than you do. But kind of go back to what's the problem, who the other people are, how can we work together even with our differences to try to solve the problem and create some sort of a stable agreement that will outlast the moment that we're in. And that's sometimes requires you to know that these values are lurking in the background, are going to make it hard to trust the person. People like people who are like themselves. It's a pretty foundational part of human trust and cooperation, but that doesn't mean you can't deal with them. So then if you're dealing with someone who you think is bluffing, you require more documentation. I had a great example come up yesterday about this. It was more of an office example about conflicts over values in a negotiation, but they're all part and parcel of the same thing in a way of managing conflict. So this young man said he was in an office and his boss came up and said," I need you to fudge the data a little on this report we're sending out to the client. And so here's what I need you to do." And the young man said," Well, I'm uncomfortable doing that." And the boss I said," Well, I'm ordering you to do it." And then the young man said," Well, all right, if you'll send me the email, order me to do it, I'll do it." Now, how clever is that? And that's a way of being tactful. But in other words, he's now telling the boss, this is going to be on you. If you're willing to put your reputation on the line, then maybe I can see my way to joining your team, but it'll be on you because you're the person who's calling the shots here. And he knew the boss wouldn't do that. And so the boss just turned and walked away. So I think when you have your values front and center, and you know what's not negotiable, your mind is more imaginative as his was in that moment to come up with a rejoinder or a question or a condition that will protect your values and also protect the moment from explosive outcomes and not end up creating confrontation and blazing forest fires where they could be avoided. I think a really important distinction I found really useful because persuasion and negotiation are so tightly connected. And when you're negotiating and you're trying to argue about what's fair, it's persuasion. You're saying, here's why I think it's fair, and here are the reasons, and here's the comparables, and here's the arguments. But it's also strategic because you're probably being selective about which precedents you pick and which comparables you highlight and so you're persuading more because you're advancing your interests and not because you believe in the standards as a matter of theology. But when you're not strategic about persuasion, when you're really trying to say, this is a value, this is an ethical standard and I have to just convince you that I'm not going to violate it. That's a difference of beliefs. And I think if you can distinguish between conflicts that are over interests, which can be negotiated. Interests are things that can be broken up into pieces, you can trade them, you can allocate them over time. You can do a lot of different stuff when you have needs, I have needs and we both try to figure out how to integrate them. But differences and conflicts over beliefs are much more difficult. They require a lot more sort of tact and perspective taking. As far as I know, and I've been teaching this for a while, as far as I know in all my work with executives, I've never heard of anyone who ever persuaded someone else to change an important belief. That isn't to say that people don't change their beliefs. It's to say that you don't change your belief because someone makes an argument that you suddenly surrender to.
Mark: You don't negotiate the change of a belief.
Richard Shell: No, what you do is you provide the other people with arguments, evidence, justifications, rationales, stories that allow them to change their own beliefs. And that's why it happens so often that you're in some big dispute about something, should we enter China or not? It's kind of a strategy discussion. And people have very strongly held passionate beliefs that go deep to what they think their company is and what their mission is and who their customers are. And it's not about negotiation. It's not about when should we go to China or how much should we spend to get into China? It's about whether we should go to China, but what happens? You have these passionate discussions on Monday and the boss is just hell bent for leather against it. And then the following Monday, the boss comes in the office and says," I've got a great idea. Let's go to China." And you're the one who has said," Let's go to China." But now it's the boss who says it's his idea that we're going to China and so we go to China. And so what you've done is you planted the seed, you gave him a chance for his subconscious mind to mull it over, and integrate it into his existing set of beliefs so that it doesn't upset too much. And then they experience it as their own idea. And then the art of course, of being effective in that situation is to let them take credit for it. There's a wonderful saying in Washington, DC, you can get almost anything done at DC if you're willing to let someone else take credit for it. So those are differences of beliefs, and that's quite a different process than a negotiation over interests, but they're tightly connected because the two things can depend on one another and you have to know the difference or else you'll start proposing things because you think it's a negotiation over interest. They're telling you, it's a matter of principle, and you're insulting them by saying," Well, let's split the difference between your principal and my principal." This is not about half way. This is about something important that's a value and it's a belief. The art of, okay, let's agree to disagree. And let's talk about something else let's ask what would it take to persuade you, if anything, to change your mind about this, I'd be interested just to know what evidence might actually work for you. I don't know what it is. And maybe none would. Sometimes if you've got people, you can kind of get them to agree that it's possible to maintain their belief with something on a very small scale that might demonstrate more information for them to consider in their belief. So that's where trial balloons and pilot projects and stuff like that come into play. And it's not a negotiation in the classic sense. We are allocating when we shift people's priorities because there's only one number one priority. It's very tightly integrated with this notion of beliefs and persuasion. And I think I have a week- long program at Wharton on persuasion and a week- long program on negotiation. And we teach some persuasion in the persuasion class. So I know that the two things can't be separated, but what I try to do is bring all those tools to bear on value- based conflicts at work and also reveal, which is the new part for me, the systematic pressures that people experience that will make expressing their views difficult and try to help them learn how to overcome those pressures, because they're very distinct pressures.
Mark: Hey listeners, I want to tell you about another company that I run called Content Callout. It is a thought leadership brand marketing company. Now, what does that mean? It means that we take you as an executive or entrepreneur, a leader of a small or medium sized business and we turn you into a thought leader online. We take your personal brand and we amp it up to 11 so that you can lead with confidence, knowing that people will recognize you, recognize your brand, and recognize your business because of the thought leadership approach that you've taken on social media, through content creation and content distribution, as well as engaging with all of your following on line. How do you get involved in this? Easy, easy, easy, just go to ContentCallout. com/ getstarted. And you will see there three different options that will allow you to take your thought leadership brand for yourself and for your business to the next level. We are super excited to talk to you about this. We've seen some massive growth with the businesses that we've been working with. Very, very exciting time for us. Look at that. We appreciate it now back to your show. One of the things that I love about your work is you're very clear, not just in this book, but in one of your previous books as well as knowing yourself-
Richard Shell: Yes.
Mark: crosstalk negotiation, which is in order to know your values you also have to know yourself. What I find that may conflict is that a lot of people may not necessarily be clear on what their values actually are. So how does someone discover that?
Richard Shell: Well one of my favorite pastimes is creating self- assessments. And so in Springboard, I have an exercise called the Six Lives Exercise to help people try to figure out their priorities when it comes to overall sort of achievement based values and happiness based values. And that just helps them surface unconscious... And in The Conscience Code, I have three assessments. One is your sort of conflict capabilities because I think a lot of people shy away from values conflicts just because they're conflict averse. May shy away from negotiations because they're conflict averse, but they certainly shy away from escalating a sexual harassment problem because they're conflict averse. So it's important to know in your introspection, if that's the issue then, okay, there's some solutions for that. You don't have to be the tip of the spear on every issue. There are a lot of other people that you could help, call on for help and to compliment your personality. There's a kind of sense of self- efficacy. That is how confident are you in your ability to be an agent in your environment? It's not just about conflict. It's just about, I can change what's happening around me. I have sort of the self confidence to do that. And there's some people that have a defense position of a high level of confidence that they could change their social media. Some people have a lower level of self- confidence, that that environment is sort of fixed and they learn to deal with it. So that's an important self knowledge as well. So I think that the values piece, actually, the way I do it in the book is I just identify the five areas of values that cause the most conflict. And everybody has all five of these values. It's a matter of how you execute on them, but the five values form, an acronym, C- R- A- F- T, CRAFT. And so they're just clusters really, C is for compassion. So those are values related to safety, related to being a victim or for patient care if you're in a hospital. But compassion values are concern for others and their wellbeing. The R values are respect, so a lot process as sexism, racism, dignity are respect values. And so a lot of conflict over these days, the way people use language, the way we're trying to navigate through people, feeling insulted and get on with discussions so that we don't just stop at that level. So the respect values are quite volatile at the moment. A is accountability. So this is basically holding people to the standards of what we would want of professionals to the best practices and the sort of moral assumptions of a given field. This has happened in the United States yesterday. We had several advisory committee members of our Food and Drug Administration quit because the FDA approved an Alzheimer's drug that they believe doesn't work. At least it hasn't been proven to work. And so that's an accountability problem. They're holding the FDA accountable to the standard of safety and efficacy, which the FDA is supposed to implement. And what really seems to have happened is it got proven to be relatively safe. So they just said," Well, it may do some good, let's let it go out into the world." But if you're a scientist, you're going to be offended that the legal standard degraded this way to just be, we'll put a sugar pill out there and we'll say that it's a drug because it's safe. Well, yeah okay but-
Mark: Especially when the standard of that organization is so high.
Richard Shell: It's so high. Yeah. So they're really standing up for accountability of the agency to it's own standards. So that's an A. And then F and T stand for fairness and justice. And again, those are widely viewed as relative inaudible justice purposes, but also fairness in pay, fairness in treatment. This is where nepotism come in, where you'd be offended when a relative of your boss gets promoted, or someone is given a raise that doesn't deserve it. So fairness, and then finally T for truth. So this is where all the attempts to deceive customers or suppliers, or to hide the ball from colleagues about conflicts of interest, or all the things that come up every day at work that have to do with transparency. So C- R- A- F- T, you pick those five values up. You ask yourself, where do I stand on that? Chances are they all stand pretty high for you. You care about victims who might be harmed. You care about respect and accountability and you certainly want a fair, just workplace and truth matters. So it's really a question of calling your shots to figure out how, when, where to effectively stand for those values and lead for those values when you see them being compromised. And I think people say," Well, we'll just wait for the big ones." We'll wait until the drug kills people, then we'll get to the compassion virtue. I don't think so. I mean, I think this idea of a person of conscience really appeals to me as an identity. And I think because if you're a person of conscience at home and or your community, you care, your values, you know when you feel guilty about something that you should have done better, you know when you're avoiding something because you're ashamed someone might discover it, that's your conscience. Everybody has that, unless you're a psychopath and the book is not written for psychopaths. So we'll just keep them on the clinical track, but bring that to work, bring that sort of attention to your conscience to work. Let that be the Canary in the coal mine. Then look at the, okay, what do I do about it? And I didn't talk about this in the book, but my favorite way of actualizing this is something called the OODA loop. The OODA loop is a... Actually Mike Wheeler talks about the OODA loop in his Art of Negotiation book, but I've adjusted a little, it's a combat pilots tactical playbook, the OODA loop. You can imagine two combat pilots going through their combat in the air and it's very quick. And they have to make these adjustments. In combat pilot training, it's O- D- A loop. O stands for observe. Second O stands for orient, which a pilot would do, and then decide what to do it, and then see what they do, and then repeat. But in the context of a values conflict, the way I've structured, it is first observe, same thing. Notice, hey, this is my conscience, little Jiminy Crickets going off here. There's something that I feel uncomfortable about. So got to face it, can't erase it. Second own it. So that means take it in and make it your responsibility. This is something I'm going to try to figure out. It's my job to try to figure it out. Even if I'm a summer intern, you can take responsibility for it and then do what you can with what you got. There's a wonderful quote from Arthur Ashe that the book starts with," Start where you are, do what you can, use what you got." And so own it. And that's where all the rationalizations flood in, oh, everybody does it, just this once, nobody will notice. And so there's this sort of lesser angel whispering into your ear to try to get you not to own it, but you have to learn to talk back to those with, I'm a person of conscience. What would grandma do? Would I be comfortable being known to be complicit in this? Now there are some other things you can talk back to your lesser angel with, and then decide the options, look through the options. Just like you would in a negotiation. Survey the options, see what's possible. And then act on the one you think is going to be the best first step. And that could just be call your mentor. It could just be talk to your office mate, and ask if they'd been harassed by the same guy, or if they know anyone who has. After action, loop, that is something's going to happen. You're going to get more information. Somebody is going to react. You're going to get an extra sort of referral or idea. And so then you go back to observe, decide, act again, and just keep the loop going until you get to someplace where you've either exhausted it. And there's really nothing you can do because you find out that you just really do have a psychopath for a boss. And the best move is to get the heck-
Mark: Sometimes does happen.
Richard Shell: Absolutely. And the faster you can get away from a psychopath, the better because staying around a psychopath is a loser's game. They'll always win and they're evil. So I'm not recommending that you try to convert a psychopath, but very often you're going to find some part of a solution. If you activate the OODA loop, instead of just withdraw. And at the very least, even if it doesn't come to the outcome you'd prefer, you'll feel proud of yourself instead of regret, remorse, and sort of guilt that you didn't do anything, you're going to be proactive. You'll gain confidence and you'll exhibit the courage of your convictions. And next time you'll be stronger, not weaker and be more likely to step up. And that means when you're doing the little ones, it's a habit. Then when the big one comes along, you don't even have to think about it. It's absolutely wrong. And you're going to find a way to speak up and you're going to prevent a major disaster, could be a firm reputation could be at risk. It could be someone's career is being put needlessly at risk, all kinds of high consequences. You're right on top of it because you have a habit of always speaking up as a person of conscience or at least acting as one even if you don't speak up, somebody else does, and you'll be an asset to the firm. I honestly think leaders for values, you don't even have to be a great firm to appreciate leaders for values. In a compliance sense, it's risk mitigation. And so you're really exhibiting a leadership capability that added to your negotiation and persuasion skills is going to be a pathway to some very interesting position in the firm.
Mark: Yeah. Agreed. Conscience Code is fantastic book by the way, really good. For the folks that are listening right now, it's available on Amazon, of course, Kindle, paperback, audiobook. And if people want to reach out to you, Richard is LinkedIn the best place to do that?
Richard Shell: LinkedIn is a great place to do that, but I have a website. G, Richard Shell, that's all one phrase. And S- H- E- L- L is how do you spell Shell, GRichardShell.com. And all my books are there. And I have two of the assessments for free people can take on GRichardShell. com. One of which is the Six Lives thing I mentioned. And the other is the Conflict Assessment that I mentioned, that's in The Conscience Code. So you can get a taste of some of those tools. And then of course, if you just go Richard Shell, Wharton School, you can't miss me. A senior member of the faculty at one of the best business schools in the world. And it's not hard to find me. So I urge people to do that.
Mark: For the listeners, just so that you know, I highly recommend that you pick up all of the books. So Bargaining for Advantage, which was the first one. It's the subtitle on that is Negotiation Strategies for Reasonable People. I love that book. I think it's really good. The Art of Woo, which is using strategic persuasion to sell your ideas, I think is brilliant. Springboard, which is the one that we referenced around knowing yourself, launching your personal search for success. Really good. And the latest one obviously is The Conscience Code. Folks pick up all of these books they're fantastic. Richard, thank you so much for being on today and sharing your wisdom.
Richard Shell: Mark, it's a pleasure to be with you. I really appreciate you having me.
Mark: Hey friends, thanks so much for listening to this episode. If you enjoyed it, please share it with friends and colleagues so that they can benefit from it as well. If you find Negotiations Ninja Podcast worthy, please go on to iTunes and give us a cool rating with a nice review. We certainly appreciate every single one that we get, because it helps us to understand who is listening, how they're listening and what it is they like. If there's something that you would like me to discuss around negotiation, influence, or persuasion, give me a shout. You know how to reach me on social media, or you can get me on my website, which is www. Negotiations. Ninja.