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Chris Voss on Negotiating the Sale of Your Business

Chris Voss

This week we have a special treat: an interview about negotiating the sale of your business with Chris Voss, the bestselling author of Never Split the Difference.

Chris used his many years of experience in international crises and high-stakes negotiations to develop a unique approach to negotiation and this week, he talks about how his approach applies to selling a business.

Prior to starting his training firm, The Black Swan Group,  Chris was the lead international kidnapping negotiator for the FBI.

Chris served as the lead Crisis Negotiator for the New York City division of the FBI. He was a member of the New York City Joint Terrorist Task Force for 14 years. He was the case agent on the TWA Flight 800 catastrophe. He also negotiated the surrender of the first hostage taker to give up in the infamous Chase Manhattan Bank robbery.

During Chris’s 24-year tenure with the Bureau, he was trained in the art of negotiation by not only the FBI, but also Scotland Yard and Harvard Law School. He is also a recipient of the Attorney General’s Award for Excellence in Law Enforcement and the FBI Agents Association Award for Distinguished and Exemplary Service.

Chris has taught business negotiation in MBA programs at the University of Southern California Marshall School of Business, and at Georgetown University McDonough School of Business. He also taught business negotiation at Harvard University and guest lectured at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, the IMD Business School in Lausanne, Switzerland, and the Goethe Business School in Frankfurt, Germany.

In this masterclass on negotiating the sale of your company, Chris will teach you how to:

  • Get the deal terms you want.

  • Avoid an earn-out.

  • Respond to a low-ball offer.

  • Use strategic silence.

  • Fight back against re-trading.

  • Stay cool when you feel yourself getting emotional.

  • Avoid being used as a pawn in someone else’s deal.

Listen Now

More About Chris Voss

Before founding The Black Swan Group, his training company, Chris was the FBI’s chief international kidnapping negotiator.

He held a pivotal role in the FBI’s New York City division as the lead Crisis Negotiator and was a significant part of the New York City Joint Terrorist Task Force for 14 years.

His notable involvements included the TWA Flight 800 case and resolving the Chase Manhattan Bank robbery. Chris’s 24-year FBI career also included extensive negotiation training from prestigious institutions and notable awards.

Furthermore, he has imparted his negotiation expertise in several top business schools in the U.S. and Europe.



This is a comprehensive appraisal of a business or investment undertaken before a merger, acquisition, or investment. It seeks to validate the information provided and uncover any potential risks or liabilities.


This is a financing arrangement for the purchase of a business, where the seller must meet certain performance goals before receiving the full purchase price. It reduces the buyer’s risk and aligns the interests of both parties post-acquisition.


This occurs when a buyer attempts to renegotiate the purchase price of a deal after initially agreeing to one. It is often seen unfavorably as it occurs after due diligence, seemingly exploiting newly discovered information.



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