About this document


At key moments in the Bodyswaps experience, useful notes are added to the learner’s virtual journal as a memory prompt that they can refer back to, as and when required.

In VR, learners access their journal by looking at their avatar’s left hand. On other devices, it can be accessed via a ‘burger menu’ in the top left corner of the screen.

This document collates the journal entries in relation to the individual activities for this course.


Laying the groundwork for negotiation


Building positive relationships with negotiation partners helps pave the way for better outcomes. 


  • Reflect on how you approach negotiations
  • Make effective small talk
  • Build rapport and trust, and manage the impression you make
  • Use active listening to understand the other person better 

Negotiation and you

Approaching negotiations

  • Our mental models are an internal representation of how we interpret and respond to the world
  • You don’t have to like negotiating, but you’ll need to do it regularly - getting comfortable with handling conflict is important 
  • Mindfulness and meditation can help reduce your stress levels before a  negotiation - visit mindful.org for more information and to learn how to meditate
  • Taking a collaborative approach, where the needs of both parties are met, builds positive relationships and improves outcomes
  • Being too aggressive, and concerned only with your needs at the bargaining table, can foster mistrust between the parties

Mastering small talk

The art of small talk

  • Self-monitor - know how you are being perceived by others - and be likeable and friendly
  • Keep your self-disclosures superficial
  • If you lack confidence, devise a script and stick to it
  • Offer authentic sounding praise and compliments - but don’t over do it
  • Build conversation around ‘props’ e.g. photos, personal items in the other person’s environment
  • “Be yourself” - but only as appropriate! It’s important to manage the impression you make
  • Don’t get to business talk too quickly 
  • Avoid voicing divisive opinions - e.g. airing political views
  • Don’t overshare or be overly familiar
  • Stop yourself being too serious - be playful and stick to light chit-chat

Build rapport and make a positive impression

Developing rapport

  • Avoid being individualistic – to create meaningful rapport, give equal consideration to the other person 
  • Questioning – use effective, open questions to uncover insights
  • Respect – if you show respect to the other person, they’ll reciprocate
  • Perception – what you say and do influences the other person’s impression of you
  • Empathy – see things through the other person’s eyes
  • Intangible value – people care about intangible value – e.g mutual respect, positive relationships - just as much as outcomes

Be an active listener

Active listening

  • Ask relevant questions – encourage the speaker to elaborate by asking open-ended questions 
  • Paraphrase and reflect back – summarise and reflect back what the speaker has said to show you’re listening and understand
  • Suspend judgment – remain open, without forming an opinion
  • Validate the emotions – name and validate the other person’s feelings, even if you don’t agree with them