Negotiating Strategies for Executives: a Workshop at Wharton


Consistently listed as one of Wharton’s top professors in BusinessWeek’s bi-annual “Guide to the Best Business Schools,” Richard’s expertise covers negotiations, persuasion and strategy. He has taught and consulted for more than 100 businesses and nonprofits including Google, Johnson & Johnson, the Pew Charitable Trusts, and Christies. He is the author of three books, including Bargaining for Advantage: Negotiation Strategies for Reasonable People, The Art of Woo: Using Strategic Persuasion to Sell Your Ideas (co-authored with Mario Moussa), andSpringboard: Launching Your Search for Personal Success.

The Wharton School
Thomas Gerrity Professor


JD with Honors, University of Virginia; BA with Honors, Princeton University.

Recent Consulting

Negotiation, personal/leadership development, and legal strategy advice for a variety of clients, including firms and individuals in the health care industry, higher education, financial services, tech, family businesses, and finance.  Designed and taught customized seminars in the United States and abroad for Google, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, Enterprise RentaCar, General Electric, Johnson & Johnson, Merck & Co., Morgan Stanley, Citigroup, Starwood Capital Group, Christie's Auction House, the World Economic Forum, and the United Food and Commercial Workers International labor union. Has addressed the American Bankers Association, Army War College, Chief of Naval Operations' Senior Strategy Group, and both Army and Navy Special Operations Forces. Has also worked closely with the FBI's Crisis Negotiation Unit.

Career and Recent Professional Awards; Teaching Awards

2013 Business Book of the Year and Personal Development Book of the Year Awards for Springboard: Launching Your Personal Search for Success; 1999 Book Award for Excellence for Bargaining for Advantage: Negotiation Strategies for Reasonable People; Wharton Hauck Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching (highest undergraduate teaching award), 2009; Wharton Undergraduate Excellence in Teaching Award (top 10 teachers by course evaluations): 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2012, 2009, 2006, 2005, 1991, 1990; Wharton MBA Class of 1984 Teaching Award (highest MBA teaching award), 2009; Wharton MBA Excellence in Teaching Award (top 8 teachers by course evaluations), 2017, 2009, 1995, 1994, 1993; Wharton MBA Teaching Award for "Going Above and Beyond" in educational dedication and innovation in the Core Curriculum, 2016, 2017; Wharton Executive MBA Program Outstanding Teaching Award 1996; MillerSherrerd MBA Core Curriculum Teaching Award, 1996; Executive MBA Teaching Award for Electives, 1996; Wharton MBA Core Curricular Cluster Award, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999.

Academic Positions Held

Professor of Legal Studies and Business Ethics, the Wharton School: 1986present. Named Thomas Gerrity Professor, 2001; Chairperson, Legal Studies and Business Ethics Department, 19952000 and 2010Present; Pfizer Foundation Term Assistant Professor of Legal Studies, 198691. Previous academic appointments: Lecturer in Legal Studies Program, Brandeis University. Visiting Scholar, Harvard School of Law, Harvard Program on Negotiation.

Other Positions

Associate, Hill & Barlow, Boston; Law Clerk, Judge Levin H. Campbell, United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, Boston, MA; Account Executive and Market Researcher, J.R. Taft Corporation, Washington, DC; Social worker and housing relocation counselor, Washington, DC.

General research interests include the psychology of achievement, psychology of happiness, and philosophy of success; moral psychology; negotiation tactics and strategy, the art and science of persuasion, and effective interpersonal influence. Current Projects: researching the neuroscience and psychology of belief states and their roles in negotiation, persuasion, and influence.  Investigating culture as a variable in global conflicts and negotiations. Researching moral psychology, behavioral ethics, and responsible leadership.

G. Richard Shell, Springboard: Launching Your Personal Search for Success (2014)

G. Richard Shell, Success, Your Way: Do What You're Meant to Do (2014)

G. Richard Shell (2010), The Morality of Bargaining: Identity versus Interests in Negotiations with Evil, Negotiation Journal, Vol. 26, No. 4, 45381.

G. Richard Shell, The Art of Woo: Using Strategic Persuasion to Sell Your Ideas (2007)

G. Richard Shell, Bargaining for Advantage: Negotation Strategies for Reasonable People, 2nd Ed (2006)

G. Richard Shell, Make the Rules or Your Rivals Will (2004)

G. Richard Shell (1995), Trade Legalism and International Relations Theory: An Analysis of the World Trade Organization , Duke Law Journal, Vol. 44, No. 5, 1995.

G. Richard Shell (1991), When is it Legal to Lie , Sloan Management Review, Spring 1991, Vol. 32, no. 3.

Teach courses for undergraduates and MBA students on the Literature of Success, Negotiations and Conflict Management, and Responsibility in Business.

Past Courses


This course presents law as an evolving social institution, with special emphasis on the legal regulation of business in the context of social values. It considers basic concepts of law and legal process, in the U.S. and other legal systems, and introduces the fundamentals of rigorous legal analysis. An indepth examination of contract law is included.


This course provides an introduction to the law of corporate management and finance, focusing on large publicly held corporations. It is presented from the perspective that before too long virtually all students will serve on one or more corporate boards of directors and that each should, therefore, know about the duties owed by directors and officers to those toward whom they bear a fiduciary duty. The course covers the basic obligations of corporate directors and managers under state corporate law and the federal securities laws. It also considers the rights and responsibilities of other major stake holders in the governance of public corporations, including shareholders, creditors/bondholders, employees (including corporate executives), investment bankers, corporate lawyers, and accountants. Particular attention is given to the law of mergers and acquisitions. Important issues of social policy concerning large business corporations are also discussed.


This course examines the art and science of negotiation, with additional emphasis on conflict resolution. Students will engage in a number of simulated negotiations ranging from simple oneissue transactions to multiparty joint ventures. Through these exercises and associated readings, students explore the basic theoretical models of bargaining and have an opportunity to test and improve their negotiation skills.


This course explores the history, literature, and philosophy of two ageold questions: what does it mean to be successful and how does one achieve this elusive goal? It surveys some of the classics of the "success" genre from Benjamin Franklin's Autobiography in the 18th century to Dale Carnegie's How to Win Friends and Influence People and Marcus Buckingham's Now, Discover Your Strengths in the 20th and 21st centuries. Case studies of remarkable achievements in business and society and Arthur Miller's play Death of a Salesman provide additional contexts within which to reflect on the questions at the center of the course. Students will keep a personal journal and use webbased tools to examine their own character strengths, talents, and achievement orientations. Grading is based on class attendance and participation, reading response papers, personal journals on assigned topics involving self reflection, a midterm paper on an assigned research subject related to success, and a final, longer paper exploring, based on course readings and original research, each students personal philosophy of success. No final exam.


A study of the nature, functions, and limits of law as an agency of societal policy. Each semester an area of substantive law is studied for the purpose of examining the relationship between legal norms developed and developing in the area and societal problems and needs.


This course introduces students to important ethical and legal challenges they will face as leaders in business. The course materials will be useful to students preparing for managerial positions that are likely to place them in advisory and/or agency roles owing duties to employers, clients, suppliers, and customers. Although coverage will vary depending on instructor, the focus of the course will be on developing skills in ethical and legal analyses that can assist managers as they make both individuallevel and firmlevel decisions about the responsible courses of action when duties, loyalties, rules, norms, and interests are in conflict. For example, the rules of insider trading may form the basis for lessons in some sections. ,Group assignments, roleplays, and case studies may, at the instructor's discretion, be used to help illustrate the basic theoretical frameworks. Course materials will highlight industry codes and professional norms, as well as the importance of personal and/or religious values. ,Format: class participation, quiz, group report, and final paper or exam. Materials: coursepack. Prerequisites: none.


This course includes not only conflict resolution but techniques which help manage and even encourage the valuable aspects of conflict. The central issues of this course deal with understanding the behavior of individuals, groups, and organizations in conflict management situations. The purpose of this course is to understand the theory and processes of negotiations as it is practiced ina variety of settings. The course is designed to be relevant to the broad specturm of problems that are faced by the manager and professional including management of multinationals, ethical issues, and alternative dispute resolutions. Cross listed w/ LGST 206 & OPIM 291.

  • MBA Excellence in Teaching Award, 2017
  • MBA “Goes Above and Beyond the Call of Duty” Core Teaching Award, 2017
  • Undergraduate Excellence in Teaching Award, 2017
  • Undergraduate Excellence in Teaching Award, 2016
  • Personal Development Book of the Year, 2013 Description

Springboard: Launching Your Personal Search for Success was awarded the prize for Best Personal Development for 2013 by CEOREAD, the largest business bookseller in America.


Business Book of the Year, 2013 Description

Springboard: Launching Your personal Search for Success was awarded the prize Best Overall Business Book for 2013 by CEOREAD, the largest business bookseller in America.

  • Huntsman Program in International Business: Senior Class Teaching Award, 2011
  • David W. Hauck Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, 2009
  • Class of 1984 award for teacher with highest teaching evaluations in the MBA program, 2009
  • Undergraduate Excellence in Teaching Award, 2006
  • Undergraduate Excellence in Teaching Award, 1999
  • Center for Public Resources, Institute for Dispute Resolution’s Book Award for Excellence for Bargaining for Advantage: Negotiation Strategies for Reasonable People (Penguin), 1999
  • MillerSherrerd MBA Core Curriculum Teaching Awards, 1997
  • Executive MBA Program Outstanding Teaching Award, 1996
  • MBA Excellence in Teaching Award, 1995 Description

The Excellence in Teaching Awards are awarded annually to eight (8) MBA faculty members who receive the highest average instructor rating on their course evaluation forms over the three prior semesters. The course evaluation forms are filled out by the students at the conclusion of every course.

  • Wharton Commitment Project Draws a Third of the Class in Debut Year, Clear Admit 06/06/2017
  • Schools revamp, refocus MBA programs, National Public Radio 12/27/2010
  • Cómo cerrar un trato entre vencedores, Las Provincias (Spain) 07/04/2010
  • The Art Of Haggling, Forbes 10/08/2009
  • How to Become a Master Persuader, CBS – Money Watch 07/07/2009

Knowledge @ Wharton

  • The Year of the Lie, Knowledge @ Wharton 12/22/2016
  • 15 Ways to Solve the Budget Impasse, Knowledge @ Wharton 10/08/2013
  • Was Jesus an Effective Leader? Insights from Reza Aslan’s ‘Zealot’, Knowledge @ Wharton 10/01/2013
  • What Should I Do Next with My Life? New Ways to Define Success, Knowledge @ Wharton 09/24/2013
  • Books for the Beach, Knowledge @ Wharton 06/25/2013
  • The Downsizing of Law Schools, Knowledge @ Wharton 03/12/2013
  • Steven Ujifusa on William Francis Gibbs and His Ships, Knowledge @ Wharton 03/06/2013
  • Book Report: Spring Reading for a Fresh Start, Knowledge @ Wharton 03/06/2013
  • Bound for the Beach? Bring These Books…, Knowledge @ Wharton 06/26/2012
  • The Negotiation Twostep, Knowledge @ Wharton 06/11/2012
  • I’m Dreaming of a White …, Knowledge @ Wharton 11/28/2011
  • What Poor Patent Protection Costs Us, Knowledge @ Wharton 06/06/2011
  • When Do Exaggerations and Misstatements Cross the Line?, Knowledge @ Wharton 06/23/2010
  • Taking on Mutual Fund Fees, Knowledge @ Wharton 10/30/2009
  • The Bernard Madoff Case: Trust Takes Another Blow, Knowledge @ Wharton 01/07/2009
  • ‘The Art of Woo’: Selling Your Ideas to the Entire Organization, One Person at a Time, Knowledge @ Wharton 10/17/2007
  • The Art of Walking Away from the Deal, Knowledge @ Wharton 01/11/2006
  • Is the Latest Corporate Bankruptcy Strategy a Death Knell for Pensions?, Knowledge @ Wharton 10/06/2004
  • How Companies Use (and Abuse) Law for Competitive Gains, Knowledge @ Wharton 05/19/2004
  • From Russia With Love: How Legal and Political Strategies Shape Competition, Knowledge @ Wharton 04/21/2004
  • Suing Your Customers: A Winning Business Strategy?, Knowledge @ Wharton 10/22/2003
  • Collapse in Cancun: The World Trade Agenda Gets Sidetracked, Knowledge @ Wharton 09/24/2003
  • Lawyers and Accountants Can Expect Curbs and Compromises in New SEC Rules, Knowledge @ Wharton 01/29/2003
  • It’s About Time: Corporate Responsibility Law Finally Makes Lawyers More Accountable, Knowledge @ Wharton 08/14/2002
  • Testing His Metal – and His Motives: Bush’s Steel Tariffs Spark an Uproar, Knowledge @ Wharton 03/13/2002
  • Are Efforts to Extend Patent and Copyright Laws Good for Business or Good for Society?, Knowledge @ Wharton 06/20/2001
  • How Deception, Reputation and Email Can Affect Your Negotiating Strategy, Knowledge @ Wharton 05/23/2001
  • Got a New Job? Better Check That NonCompete Clause, Knowledge @ Wharton 03/19/2001
  • Risky Business: Kidnappers Target Global Executives, Knowledge @ Wharton 11/22/2000
  • Should Law and Accounting Firms Be Allowed to Merge?, Knowledge @ Wharton 07/19/2000
  • China’s Great Leap Outward, Knowledge @ Wharton 03/21/2000
  • The Umpire Strikes Back (And Out), Knowledge @ Wharton 08/19/1999
  • Bargaining for Advantage, Knowledge @ Wharton 07/23/1999
  • What’s Your Best Offer?, Knowledge @ Wharton 05/24/1999

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