For some companies and individuals, the negotiation before the close is long, gut wrenching, and sometime tense.  Lots of people play games at negotiation-time:  one-off requests, take-backs, hidden competition, unknown decision makers, etc.

And then there’s the lawyers.

If you’re selling to a company that plays games at negotiation, it’s frustrating, but not hopeless.  And the respective legal teams don’t have to be a problem to manage — they’re just doing their job, working to protect their client.

The thing to do to make negotiation a snap and limit the monkey-games people play is have the conversation before the final proposal is presented.

Before you submit a proposal, discuss the deal with the buyer in simple, plain English.  Discuss and present a DRAFT of the agreement the way you and the buyer understand it — who will do what and when.  Don’t make it formal.  Make it accurate and simple to understand.  Get agreement with the buyer that the simple, straight-forward understanding you have is common to their understanding.  Then take that simple understanding and formalize it into a final proposal for execution.

I’ve negotiated contracts of all size this way.  It eliminates a lot of misunderstanding, cuts negotiation games to a minimum, and speeds the contract signing phase of closing the sale.

What prompted me to write about this is a post by Tim Berry titled Three Simple but Powerful Rules for Negotiation.  The tip I share in this post is the same as the third one Tim offers.  I can firsthand attest to its power in closing a deal.

Be sure to read Tim’s post, it offers  great practical advice.   Better, read his blog…good stuff.

What practical advice would you add to Tim’s list?


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