The Deal­ma­ker as Pri­va­te as Never — Inter­view with Jack Nas­her as Pod­cast

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Hel­lo Jack. Coro­na cri­sis, hard times, whe­re are you right now? And how are you doing with social distancing? I see you in your Hugh Hef­ner memo­ri­al out­fit?

The­re are also advan­ta­ges, for exam­p­le, you can walk around com­for­ta­b­ly. So I go run­ning every mor­ning. I’ve never been so exci­ted about going for a run. Then to Käfer, that’s the nice thing about Munich, that’s whe­re I live, they have very nice rolls. It’s a kind of ritu­al, you need that somehow and then I come home, take a show­er and then I get all dres­sed up. I have a lot of robes, I kind of like that, and that’s my fan­cy one now. Extra for the inter­view. 

I feel hono­red. Very nice yes then, I have packed a few topics also with rein­ge­pack, which, I think, are not so well known by you. May­be I was­n’t the only one who asked the ques­ti­on: Whe­re in it is actual­ly the pro­fes­sor, also the doc­tor? I saw you once on a pic­tu­re tog­e­ther with Richard David Precht, whom I admi­re and reve­re very much, and thought to mys­elf hey cool and found out now only the last days that you are doc­tor of phi­lo­so­phy and find that very exci­ting. Now just in rela­ti­on to the cur­rent situa­ti­on, becau­se you can always look at things from dif­fe­rent per­spec­ti­ves, but the phi­lo­so­phi­cal is alre­a­dy so the hig­her-level that you can just have and that inte­rests me very much.


I’ve always been inte­res­ted in pret­ty tan­gi­ble phi­lo­so­phy, espe­ci­al­ly phi­lo­so­phy of sci­ence, so how sci­ence has to be, how we can know what makes a good stu­dy and so on. So very tech­ni­cal, but very important. That’s why I think the idea of an open socie­ty is important, that you can dis­cuss things open­ly, becau­se it’s not about whe­ther you’­re right or I’m right, but about fin­ding the truth tog­e­ther. That’s the idea of phi­lo­so­phy, which trans­la­tes love of truth. And the pro­blem now, as so often, is that a pre­vai­ling opi­ni­on pre­vails and the­re is no lon­ger an opti­on.

So if one somehow says the virus, all this is exag­ge­ra­ted becau­se so and so and then he is not dis­cus­sed serious­ly, but one says aha, this is a Coro­na deni­er or the­re are the­se stamps like also Putin deni­er or cli­ma­te denier.Jack Nas­her

The­se are all such stamps, I mean ear­lier in the Midd­le Ages one then said here­tic and that was the end of the mat­ter. You don’t have to deal with that any­mo­re. I don’t want to call mys­elf a phi­lo­so­pher, but if you stu­dy phi­lo­so­phy, you are not a phi­lo­so­pher, but a his­to­ri­an of ide­as. So you deal with what did he say, what did the other say? I think that’s incre­di­bly inte­res­t­ing. But in any case, I see that here as well, as always, when a domi­nant opi­ni­on pre­vails, I find that very dan­ge­rous for our open socie­ty, that many also go along with it, quite vol­un­t­a­ri­ly. That’s one thing and the other thing is as a his­to­ri­an of ide­as, which is just very inte­res­t­ing, we now have time to deal with things. So you can see my wall of books here, there’s still a lot to read.

All gifts?

Yes, but the­re comes a time for almost every book. I often buy books and I read them after four years or so and that’s okay. When I see that, then I know I can stay here three years or even much lon­ger pro­ba­b­ly. So the coll­ec­ted works until I read them all and under­stand them.…

That is of cour­se very beau­tiful, or as Aris­tot­le once said: Edu­ca­ti­on is the best nou­rish­ment for old age. There’s always some­thing you can occu­py yours­elf with as a phi­lo­so­pher or his­to­ri­an of ide­as. Of cour­se, that’s also an important thing, espe­ci­al­ly at this time when you have to spend your time at home.

But I don’t think anyo­ne has to be bored.Versace once said he does­n’t under­stand why some peo­p­le are bored. If you’­re bored, do some­thing else.Gianni Ver­sa­ge

Read a book and when you’­re bored, read ano­ther one. First you watch a movie, then you go for a walk. I’m never bored.

This is the ques­ti­on after that: How well can I be alo­ne with mys­elf? Many peo­p­le find this dif­fi­cult becau­se they have got­ten out of the habit of doing it them­sel­ves. The offer is, after all, enter­tain me all day. May­be it’s a chan­ce for peo­p­le to come to them­sel­ves a litt­le more when they’­re not bea­ting each other to death. 

Yes, for sure. So peo­p­le are going to kill each other. I’m sure the divorce rates will go up and also the birth rates, may­be even both for some peo­p­le. But defi­ni­te­ly that’s going to hap­pen, becau­se peo­p­le never have that much time tog­e­ther.

Abso­lut­e­ly! Both I find total­ly okay, becau­se that’s also nice when you’­re so clo­se to each other and at the end of the time deter­mi­nes, no offen­se but I would have a bet­ter idea than to mar­ry you. A real pro­blem is, of cour­se, when the­re are small child­ren who need to be edu­ca­ted, but the par­ents are com­ple­te­ly inca­pa­ble of doing so. This can also esca­la­te quick­ly, becau­se par­ents are com­ple­te­ly hel­p­less and it then comes to dome­stic vio­lence, which I also belie­ve that it has an increased impact the­se days..

Cer­tain­ly. So I noti­ce even if I would­n’t go run­ning now, you alre­a­dy have such an aggres­si­on in you. If someone is stan­ding straight, then that’s not good. You need an out­let, like this run­ning for me. I don’t real­ly enjoy it that much, some­ti­mes I just do it. But after­wards you just feel much bet­ter and you feel right away that you’­ve accom­plished some­thing.

That’s just incre­di­bly important that we use the time to crea­te some­thing, use it in a meaningful way somehow, no mat­ter what. So that’s always my mot­to, you always have to somehow twist what’s right now so that it’s bet­ter for you in the end.Jack Nas­her


Very nice, let’s include the next con­side­ra­ti­on. And that is the topic of com­pa­nies in the Coro­na cri­sis. You’­re also known as a busi­ness psy­cho­lo­gist, and the ques­ti­on behind that is: What does that actual­ly do to com­pa­nies? Things have to be chan­ged now. Home office is a big chall­enge for many, some­ti­mes just becau­se the­re is no equip­ment, but a very big pro­blem is a men­tal pro­blem, the mind­set is sim­ply miss­ing. Part of the con­trol may also be lost. The ques­ti­on, do they get the hours full, which is still the­re in many com­pa­nies. What is hap­pe­ning in the com­pa­nies right now?

Yes, I mean, the­re are now two boosts that can be seen quite cle­ar­ly. One is this home office boost, which is sim­ply ine­vi­ta­ble even in com­pa­nies that have always wan­ted to avo­id it.

The­re are many com­pa­nies that say it’s important for peo­p­le to meet and com­mu­ni­ca­te, but the­re are also many, espe­ci­al­ly intro­verts, who work much bet­ter in a home office becau­se they can’t cope with the noi­se.

I have many par­ti­ci­pan­ts in my semi­nars who say I don’t get any­whe­re becau­se the door is always ope­ning or someone is stan­ding next to me and chat­ting me up, and I can’t tell ever­yo­ne to go away. You have to learn that, too. The peo­p­le who always drea­med of a home office might not be up for it any­mo­re, becau­se you need your disci­pli­ne.

What’s also hap­pe­ning is a digi­tal boost. So we’­re all busy now, loo­king at Sky­pe, Zoom or Micro­soft Teams or wha­te­ver. The­se things that you pre­vious­ly put on the back bur­ner becau­se you weren’t up for it, I was­n’t eit­her. I was always a live per­son, I was­n’t inte­res­ted in that at all, what can you do? Now you just have to do it and now you compa­re. So I think that has ine­vi­ta­b­ly brought us very far for­ward in digi­ta­liza­ti­on. But ever­yo­ne, the­re is no com­pe­ti­ti­ve advan­ta­ge becau­se ever­yo­ne is now doing the same. Here, too, I think in the end you have to see that you don’t have to chan­ge any­thing in an extre­me way. I mean, the world will go on soo­ner or later. The world will go on, becau­se I mean I know some peo­p­le who have the virus, they are doing well again. I’m not a medi­cal doc­tor, but it does­n’t seem now that the­re is a pla­gue wave coming.

The world will go on, the banks I work with are now run­ning again as well. The­re were a cou­ple of deals in the pipe­line just now. It’s got to keep going, it’s going to keep going. I think peo­p­le will have more sen­se of home office now.

Com­pa­nies may have seen a few advan­ta­ges with home office as well as the dis­ad­van­ta­ges. It has sim­ply cata­pul­ted us many years for­ward in the­se two things: Digi­tiza­ti­on and office issues.

Wher­eby I belie­ve that in this short time, whe­re it now had to be imple­men­ted, not ever­yo­ne is real­ly up to speed yet, but in fact the wheat is still being sepa­ra­ted from the chaff. Who can real­ly hand­le it at the moment? And for whom is it per­haps still a bit of a lon­ger stretch to be at eye level as well? Becau­se you said, in the end, we’­re all on the same level again, just more digi­tal. I do belie­ve that the­re is a dif­fe­rence in the abili­ty to deal with it. I do belie­ve that for many peo­p­le the­re will be a very lar­ge gap that will have to be clo­sed.

Then we come to the next topic, which has also been put on the back bur­ner in recent years: eLear­ning. The com­pa­nies have very dif­fe­rent levels of suc­cess. BMW has been using eLear­ning for over ten years with its own in-house plat­form. Many lar­ge com­pa­nies using it for onboar­ding, com­bi­ned for employee trai­ning. But then in the mid-sized com­pa­nies, which make up the bulk of our eco­no­my, we’­re still rela­tively far away from that as well. Then, on the other hand, the­re is the topic of online cour­ses in the busi­ness of con­sul­tants, which is not yet eLear­ning. Nevert­hel­ess, I belie­ve that in this con­text, social distancing eLear­ning has once again crea­ted a much grea­ter pro­xi­mi­ty.


As far as eLear­ning is con­cer­ned, many peo­p­le, inclu­ding mys­elf, who are not digi­tal nati­ves, always think that live is bet­ter, live is just live. But I’ve noti­ced, I’ve had a lot of lec­tures now, that the­re are con­sidera­ble advan­ta­ges to eLear­ning. Of cour­se, first of all the­re are very simp­le logi­sti­cal advan­ta­ges. You don’t have to dri­ve some­whe­re, that all cos­ts time, you don’t have to pay for a hotel. What is also very important for par­ti­ci­pan­ts, you can adapt ever­y­thing to you. I noti­ce when I teach that the­re are very dif­fe­rent levels in the audi­ence.

The­re are peo­p­le who under­stand imme­dia­te­ly, who want to con­ti­nue right away, and the­re are other peo­p­le who haven’t got it yet, and you always have to find the balan­ce bet­ween how often do I explain this now, how many examp­les do I give, until ever­yo­ne has got it. Some peo­p­le get bored, of cour­se. That’s why the­re are three dif­fe­rent types of school. That is not pos­si­ble with adult edu­ca­ti­on. You can’t say, “Watch out, we’ll do three groups here first.

You have to take ever­yo­ne with you and that is also a pro­blem for you when you are sit­ting in the semi­nar. Do you come along or are you a per­son who always has to read ever­y­thing or are you a per­son who has to prac­ti­ce or lis­ten and you can con­trol that very well with eLear­ning. You have the vide­os in front of you, that’s why we made this online aca­de­my in such a way that we com­bi­ned it with live lear­ning and abo­ve all you have all the semi­nar con­tent after your time.

The video les­sons are released gra­du­al­ly, so it’s not like there’s a bunch of vide­os and you’­re like, okay, I might as well go to You­Tube, but real­ly bro­ken down chro­no­lo­gi­cal­ly so that you learn that.

The key thing is you can always go back, you can skip things if they bore you, which won’t be the case becau­se it’s alre­a­dy very den­se ever­y­thing, but you can, espe­ci­al­ly if you did­n’t get it, go back or if you think I want to hear that again, you can just lis­ten to it again. The­re are other bene­fits of eLear­ning, you can put the exer­cise right in also finish it at your pace and then zip to the next one and you’­re done! There’s no idle time, there’s no dou­ch­ebag you have to work with, all that’s gone. The­re are signi­fi­cant advan­ta­ges and in terms of con­tent it is exact­ly the same, only for you. It was important to us when we desi­gned this new nego­tia­ti­on trai­ning, and we had it any­way, we wan­ted to do it in months, we have done it much fas­ter now. Of cour­se we also have to earn money, the semi­nars are can­ce­led. Must be said quite honest­ly, is sim­ply so and vice ver­sa, of cour­se, we also want you to earn money, that anyo­ne inte­res­ted ear­ns money, that is again good for us. It’s real­ly the oppor­tu­ni­ty now becau­se you’ll pro­ba­b­ly never have that much time in your life again. Nego­tia­ti­on is important, espe­ci­al­ly when resour­ces are scar­ce, and they will be for now, then of cour­se you want the lion’s share. So at least you want to get a fair share and it’s going to be about nego­tia­ting right. In many indus­tries, the only way you can make any money at all is through nego­tia­ti­on. We just desi­gned it in such a way that we real­ly use the advan­ta­ges of eLear­ning. So it’s not a third-rate or second-rate live cour­se, but it’s prac­ti­cal­ly the live cour­se that’s bet­ter for you. The­re are also the live semi­nars once a week whe­re simu­la­ti­ons are made, whe­re you can prac­ti­ce, whe­re you can ask ques­ti­ons. That is with the sil­ver packa­ge and with the gold packa­ge the­re are also live mee­tings once a month, when you can meet again of cour­se. But we are not going to be locked in for the next two years.

It’s a com­bi­na­ti­on of exer­ci­s­es, of simu­la­ti­ons live and all the con­tent that’s online, the con­tent is wel­co­me to be online. That’s even bet­ter, becau­se it’s chro­no­lo­gi­cal­ly orde­red, so you just under­stand it, so it’s not like You­tube, …

here a video, the­re a video, in the end you don’t know any­thing. You have the slides, you have a clear order and at the end you have a work­s­heet with which you can go into every nego­tia­ti­on. You also learn how to expo­se lies, how to see if someone is tel­ling the truth or not, how to ask the right ques­ti­ons and how to con­vin­ce peo­p­le of who you are as a per­son. Becau­se peo­p­le are more likely to buy and more likely to make deals with others they think are com­pe­tent. That’s the essence of all my books, that’s all my semi­nars. So this is real­ly whe­re it all comes tog­e­ther, we haven’t had any­thing like this. I think if you say to yours­elf, okay, I want to make the most of this time, and you real­ly want to learn some­thing, this is some­thing that I high­ly recom­mend.

I would do it mys­elf as well. I desi­gned it in such a way that I would also do it mys­elf and I expect a lot, I get bored quick­ly, I want con­tent and no bab­b­le, I real­ly want things that are not available else­whe­re. I want you to go out after­wards and not just know, once heard how some­thing works, but that you can do it after­wards. Not just know it, but be able to do it. The­re is a very clear lear­ning con­cept.

We have also for­mu­la­ted this very cle­ar­ly. We have five prin­ci­ples of lear­ning that I’ve come up with for digi­tal lear­ning, so that you real­ly learn opti­mal­ly accor­ding to the latest pedago­gy and can real­ly do it after­wards.

You deal with it, spend some time with it and then you can do it. With a cer­ti­fi­ca­te and all the trim­mings, so to speak, you have it in wri­ting, then you can nego­tia­te, read and influence peo­p­le — that’s the mot­to. 

That sounds fan­ta­stic! This com­bi­na­ti­on of con­tent, the struc­tu­re, the didac­tics behind it, just like in your live semi­nars, and that you still have the oppor­tu­ni­ty to talk from per­son to per­son in bet­ween, quite sim­ply wit­hout being trap­ped in a struc­tu­re. Also to for­mu­la­te ques­ti­ons as you have them in your head and not some­whe­re in a sheet, from which you read and then of cour­se take over a bit of the wor­ding. It sounds as if this is alre­a­dy a posi­ti­ve deve­lo­p­ment from this cri­sis and the­r­e­fo­re per­haps also a good exam­p­le for many other com­pa­nies to sim­ply tack­le things now that have per­haps been thought about for some time, but were never quite brought to com­ple­ti­on. But when they are imple­men­ted, to real­ly do them at the hig­hest level. Anyo­ne who real­ly knows you knows that you also have very high qua­li­ty stan­dards, that you are a per­fec­tion­ist. I think that’s some­thing ever­y­bo­dy can look for­ward to when they go into the online nego­tia­ti­on trai­ning. If you yours­elf are satis­fied with it and say that it’s all the­re, then in my view it real­ly is a very high level. 


That plea­ses me and yes, abso­lut­e­ly, as you say, so we real­ly gave ever­y­thing, we keep working on it. So if any­thing is not opti­mal, it’s always impro­ving. We’­re all working on it, the who­le team is working on it, I’m working on it. I’m pre­sent all the time and to that ext­ent use the time, make some­thing out of it. Becau­se it’s going to con­ti­nue and the ques­ti­on is, do you want to be able to look back on this time and say, yes, I real­ly lear­ned some­thing that I would­n’t have done other­wi­se.

So it sort of has an advan­ta­ge for you becau­se you’­re going to learn a skill that you can use for the rest of his life and that you don’t learn other­wi­se, not in school, in very few uni­ver­si­ties.

But that’s some­thing that real­ly makes the dif­fe­rence, which is con­vin­cing peo­p­le, and that’s in any deal or nego­tia­ti­on. A nego­tia­ti­on is of cour­se always a deal. If I want to sell a house or a car, it’s deci­ded within seconds whe­ther you earn a few 1000€ more or less, no mat­ter what you work, you don’t have such an hour­ly wage with any­thing else. But of cour­se also in pri­va­te, the­se are also nego­tia­ti­ons. Whe­re do we go out to eat, do we go to the cine­ma or which film do we watch, which will all hap­pen again, the­se are also nego­tia­ti­ons. In prin­ci­ple, nego­tia­ting means rea­ching your per­so­nal maxi­mum.

Suc­cess actual­ly means that you rea­li­ze your per­so­nal maxi­mum, that you can actual­ly rea­li­ze your per­so­nal poten­ti­al, and for that, just the­se nego­tia­ti­on skills, which is the dyna­mic bet­ween peo­p­le, are pri­ce­l­ess.

That’s why I’ve been doing this my who­le life, other­wi­se I would­n’t be doing this, but I think the key of this world is real­ly under­stan­ding peo­p­le, rea­ding peo­p­le and influen­cing peo­p­le. For me, that’s what I like to pass on.

And that is exact­ly what is included in the online nego­tia­ti­on trai­ning now real­ly from A to Z within eight weeks, both the pure con­tent, as well as the per­so­nal deve­lo­p­ment. During the eight weeks, the par­ti­ci­pant recei­ves indi­vi­du­al sup­port based on his per­so­nal sta­tus, whe­re you can help him from one week to the next. In an online cour­se with lots of vide­os, he might not make that next leap eit­her. I belie­ve that this is exact­ly the com­bi­na­ti­on that gene­ral­ly means the future. The mix­tu­re of being able to learn as effi­ci­ent­ly as pos­si­ble on the one hand, but also from per­son to per­son. This does­n’t neces­s­a­ri­ly have to be on site and live, we are now having a won­derful con­ver­sa­ti­on via Sky­pe. I see you just as I would if you were stan­ding in front of me. I even see you in pri­va­te in your apart­ment with the big wall of books, in your Hugh Hef­ner memo­ri­al bath­ro­be, which is of cour­se also a real high­light for me ????

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