How to get out of trouble – Noah’s negotiating handbook pt.1

Mistake, Error, Question Mark, Fail

Audio version available:

The moron strategy:

The strategy itself sounds quite strange, however, it is an effective strategy when it comes to defusing stressful situations. The strategy is basically what an idiot does in arguments.

Typically the moron will not understand you. What you say will not be understood by the other side, thus, rendering your argument worthless. I’ve used this in various scenarios, where I needed to neutralize the other side.

How to use the strategy

This could be used in a wide range of scenarios. One of them being in regular negotiations with entities like banks. Most people want to act as if they are the smarter side. Like they know everything. However, this doesn’t always work in your interest. It could end up as leverage for the other side. 

This one time a buddy of mine owed money to the mafia. The mafia threatened him after he missed a few payments. He called me for help, his financial situation had deteriorated. Naturally, I agreed to help him. 

Instead of acting all tough with the mafia. We decided to approach them as vulnerable and helpless people. The mafia already had their money invested in us, therefore, they would need to help us. 

If they chose to harm us, they would need to deal with law enforcement and the logistics of it. Plus, they had lots of money invested in my friend. Anyhow, I explained how my friend’s financial situation deteriorated and how we needed their help to get out of the financial mess. 

The mafia had granted a large amount of money to my friend, they were not willing to lose that money. We told them we needed the interest rate lowered. The mafia did not like the idea, however, as said before, they were not willing to lose all the money they had invested in my friend. 

By simply appearing as vulnerable and acting as if we were lost, we got out of the trouble. We kept appearing as innocent/vulnerable people that needed their help. They had no other choice. The interest rate was lowered. 


It is easy to approach negotiations all tough and intelligent. However, one needs to learn to distinguish the difference between negotiations where you need to act dumb and the ones you need to act intelligent. If leveraged the right way, this strategy can immensely benefit you. 

Authors Note

We wish our readers don’t just simply read this story but also reflect on the lessons mentioned. See if you implement the lessons into your life. We hope this story does more than just entertain you.

Book: You can negotiate anything by Herb Cohen

Lesson(s): Learn when to act vulnerable and/or dumb in negotiations. Acting intelligent and tough might not always work in your interest. 

Notice: All of the entities and locations mentioned in this entry are fictional.

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