Do You Want to Be an Effective Negotiator?

Why you need to read “Never Split the Difference.”

Niall Leah
8 min readNov 17, 2022


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I was about to sign my life away for another year when a friend recommended this book to me. You see, I was coming to the end of my work contract at my school here in China, and my astute friend seeing that I needed help, pushed this book into my hands.

I was very impressed. Today I would like to share some of the most effective and straightforward takeaways I was able to put into practice.

Luckily, I was able to put what I learned into immediate practice. It was a massive help in the negotiation, and I am thrilled that I read it before I began negotiating.

I’m usually not assertive when it comes to negotiation. Honestly, I find it awkward to ask for more or say no to the first offer.

In this case, I felt like I had earned it. Still, I could never have imagined myself as the stereotypical tough negotiator banging my desk on the table and playing hardball with the numbers.

This book showed me I didn’t have to be. I could be myself and still push to get a better deal.

I renegotiated my working contract with a much better outcome than anticipated. I got everything I had set out to achieve and more despite being offered less and feeling like I should just take it.

If this in any way sounds familiar to you, then this is also the book for you.

I’m writing this for two reasons. Both to review and internalize the methods found within and to allow others to benefit from practical strategies and nuggets of insight found within.

Never split the difference.

The book was written by a former FBI hostage negotiator Chris Voss. He wrote the book based on a twenty-four-year-long career of tough negotiations.

This guy has seen it all.

It’s filled with real-life stories from his time with the FBI and explains the history and success of the concepts he shares in the book.

Chris has built his entire career on ending negotiations successfully in the most challenging circumstances. He has talked down bank robbers, men armed with assault rifles…



Niall Leah

An ex-pat from the UK living in Chengdu, China. I satisfy my endless curiosity about the incredible journey of humanity by reading, traveling, and writing.