This week, participants in EADA’s International Master and MBA programmes have competed in an intense week-long competition to hone their skills during the EADA Negotiation Challenge (TENC). This year marks the second annual TENC, which is driven by the increasing importance of negotiation skills for managers across all sectors. Today’s business leaders are required to identify innovative solutions and create value through negotiation techniques, and TENC is designed to ensure that EADA’s graduates know how to make the most of any opportunity.
More than 300 participants representing 65 nationalities took part in TENC 2019, with a total of 80 teams competing for first place. The Challenge incorporates a wide range of activities to ensure that participants develop the skill-set of master negotiators:
- Computer-based simulation and conflict resolution games
- Challenging role plats inspired by real business cases
- Observation and analysis of expert negotiators
- Learning Journals to demonstrate the knowledge and skills acquired
At the beginning of the week, students were divided into teams of 4, with team members from different programmes and backgrounds. The teams are designed so that each member contributes a unique point of view that enriches the negotiation process. According to Antony Poole, Director of the International Master in Marketing, this is key to developing an effective strategy. “In any team, some members will be better than others at leading the negotiation in particular circumstances,” he says. “Every negotiation is different, so the strategy needs to be different.”
EADA Senior Associate Professor Jeroen van Zoggel, who was involved with organising TENC, views effective negotiation skills as among the most important factors for success. According to Professor van Zoggel, the saying “you don’t get what you deserve, but what you negotiate” is absolutely true.
The grand finale of TENC was held on Thursday at the Aribau Cinema. The finale opened with a judo exhibition, during which EADA participants had the opportunity to try their hand at the sport. During the activity, parallels were drawn between judo and negotiation, such as the importance of mutual respect, maintaining control and effective concentration.
At the finale, the two finalist teams negotiated one last time to demonstrate their skills in the areas of leadership, communication, active listening and creativity. While the finalists prepared for the negotiation, the rest of the teams were treated to a presentation by guest speaker Steve Gates, Executive Chairman at the Gap Partnership, a consultancy firm specialised in negotiation. Gates offered a first-hand account of the importance of negotiation in consulting, highlighting several key factors such as clear and creative thinking, a climate of trust, self-control, open-mindedness and mutual respecting.
At the end of the event, this year’s winning teams were announced:
- 1st place: Diego Saravia (International MBA), Samuel van Innis (Master in Management), Margarita Eikosipentari (Master in Tourism & Hospitality Management), Lilian Baraki (Master in Accounting & Financial Management) and Hussein Hasan Fares (Master in Finance)
- Runner up: Diego Shwiff (MBA Internacional – Bilingüe), Oscar Bischofberger (Master en Management – Bilingüe), Eleonora Bellotto (Master in Finance) and Rubén Félix (Master en Marketing – Bilingüe)
- Best Learning Journal Prize: Ayman Hendi (Master in Management), María Cortes (Master in Sustaiunable Business & Innovation), Mouna Mourali (Master in Finance) and José Salvador (Master in Marketing)
During TENC, EADA’s participants are continuously testing and developing their analytical and decision making skills in the context of real business negotiations, as well as putting into practice their teamworking skills. Professor van Zoggel explains the learning outcomes in this way: “In TENC, students both collaborate and compete intensively.”