"Diplomacy is the art of letting someone else have your way" - Daniele Vare, Italian diplomat.

So starts William Ury's book 'Getting Past No', the sequel to the bestseller, 'Getting to Yes'.

'Getting Past No' addresses the thorny aspect of dealing with people who won't deal.  It is a useful book for mediators, negotiators, dispute resolution lawyers and parties involved in litigation.  Ury sets out a 5-step approach to change the game from face-to-face confrontation to side-by-side problem-solving.

Step 1 - Go to the balcony - Don't react but step back and seek to collect your wits and look at the situation objectively.  Identify your interest (rather than your position) and your BATNA (your Best Alternative to a Negotiated Agreement).

Step 2 - Step to their side - Rather than meeting a position head on, listen actively, acknowledge his or her point, offer an apology if appropriate, agree where you can, accumulate yeses, build a working relationship and express your views without provoking him or her.

Step 3 -  Don't reject..... reframe - Ask problem-solving questions, ask why, ask why not, ask what it, ask what makes that fair, ask open-ended questions, and explore options for agreement.

Step 4 - Build them a golden bridge - Ask for and build on your opponent's ideas, offer your opponent a choice, don't assume a fixed pie, help your opponent save face, and don't rush to finish.

Step 5 - Bring them to their senses, not to their knees - Ask reality-testing questions, demonstrate your BATNA without provoking, let your opponent choose, keep implementation in mind, reaffirm the relationship and aim for mutual satisfaction (not victory).