“The man is simply not good enough” said Bhushan, the Head of Purchase in a large multinational when I was having a meeting with him. “I assigned him a negotiation task and he missed out on one item”.
Further conversation revealed the following: He had assigned the task of negotiating a contract with a vendor to Raju, his subordinate. This was the first time Raju was doing such a task. Raju had negotiated favourable terms on 19 items but had missed out on the 20 th. The terms for the 20th item were not unfavourable to their organisation, it was just that they were less favourable than the first 19!