• Predefining Negotiables for Contract Negotiations for More Favorable Outcomes

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    March 01, 2022

    The number of small businesses in the United States reached 31.7 million in 2020. These businesses are representative of all but 0.1% of companies in America. If you're selling services to small businesses, your potential market is nearly limitless. However, it's essential to negotiate solid contracts that are profitable while being worthwhile to the businesses you're selling to. Regardless of the services you sell, predefining negotiables can create more favorable outcomes. 

    How to Predefine Your Negotiables 

    By definition, a negotiable is something not set in stone. For contract negotiation, these are items that can vary based on circumstances. For example, the price of your services may vary based on the size of an order. Many companies offer bulk prices for products and services.  

    Going into a contract negotiation without a range for each negotiable is setting yourself up for failure. You need to know both the minimum you're willing to accept and the (higher) starting point for your negotiations. Never accept less than your predefined minimums. 

    Ask yourself what your top priorities are. What's the minimum price you're willing to accept for your services? Is there a minimum amount you need the other party to order to make the contract worthwhile? Do you need order frequency to be weekly, biweekly, or monthly at a minimum?

    Once you've established your top priorities, weigh the risks and rewards of meeting less important needs. Rank these lesser goals in order of importance. 

    Don't Rush the Process

    There's a reason contract negotiations take time. Rushing the process can cause you to take a bad deal. Bad deals could provide little (or no) financial gain and negatively impact your company's reputation. It's better to take your time. However, completing extensive research and required documentation ahead of time can help speed the process along.

    Before negotiations, research the company you hope to sell your services to. Look into what your competition is offering. Consider how you can make your own services stand out. Can you provide an additional service your competitors can't? Are your prices better? Then, predefine your negotiables in detail.

    During negotiations, keep an open mind but never settle for less than your minimums. By settling for less than your minimums, you could end up losing money and closing off the potential for better contracts.

    Don't agree to the contract right then. Instead, ask for a few days to think about the offer. Then, if you decide to accept the terms, you'll do so with a clear mind. 

    Focus on Contract Presentation 

    When drawing up your proposed contract, make sure you focus on how it's presented. A well-displayed, easily readable contract can help make the outcome favorable for you. Remember to pay attention to detail. Answer all potential questions and keep the sections organized. If you combine PDFs it can help make things look professional. 

    Define Negotiables for More Favorable Outcomes

    You should never go into contract negotiations blindly. Predefine your negotiables in detail for a more favorable outcome. 

    Consider joining your local chamber of commerce for networking and access to valuable resources.

     
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