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Hate to negotiate? That's still no excuse to avoid learning this skill.

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This story appears in the September 2004 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

An entrepreneur who doesn't like to negotiate is like a chef who doesn't like to handle knives. Bargaining ability is a key business skill. If you resist learning and using it, you have a serious deficit-not just at the bargaining table, but also in life.

Of course, there are plenty of reasons not to like negotiating. It can be alternately petty, time-consuming, confrontational, impossibly difficult and aggravating (to name a few). What matters most, however, is why you don't like to negotiate.

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