Contract negotiation is something everyone is going to have to deal with at some point. It's obviously more common when you're operating a business, but employees can also benefit from knowing how to negotiate effectively. After all, negotiation skills will help you land the best deal when starting a new job or trying to get a raise. They may even help you secure a new home or commercial property in your desired price range.
With all these things in mind, we've put together the below list of strategies for effective contract negotiations. By the end of the article, you’ll be better equipped to get a good deal, no matter your situation.
Have a Good Lawyer
For larger contracts, a good lawyer is crucial. For example, if you live on the Victorian border, you will want to engage the best solicitors in Albury to help ensure that things fall into place according to plan. While this may not be entirely necessary for a new staff member who's simply trying to get the best pay, it is vital for large business deals. So be sure to bring in a professional when their skills are warranted.
Although your goal in contract negotiations will be to get things to go how you want them to, it is far easier to get what you want if the other parties are also getting what they want. By being collaborative during the negotiation process, you ensure the other person walks away happy. When they feel like they got a fair deal, you’re far more likely to walk away with what you want too. Plus, because you're collaborating rather than arguing, things can proceed far more smoothly, meaning your negotiations will take less time and incur fewer costs.
Focus on the Greater Good
Where possible, focus on the greater good when negotiating any contract. This ethos applies far more strongly to business contracts but still has relevance to negotiations between employers and new employees.
An excellent way to do this when working with another business is to implement social procurement strategies wherever possible. Put simply, social procurement is a process by which the goods or services you're buying and selling provide more benefits to society than their simple face value. While this may not seem all that important when you’re focused on getting the best deal in your contract negotiation, it has plenty of flow on benefits and can even save you money, so it's a clause worth adding.
Choose Your Contracts Wisely
Finally, if you ask someone to provide products or services outside their standard offering, you'll always be starting from a disadvantage. Doing so can make it almost impossible for you to get your desired outcome and may even prevent an agreement from being reached. That's why you need to be selective about who you enter into negotiations with in the first place.
For example, if you only require local freight services, focus on the best couriers in your area. However, if you're looking to expand your offerings in the near future, you'll be much better off speaking with a fulfilment centre. Selecting the right business to negotiate with will help you secure deals that come with the flexibility to scale up or down as needed.
Think of negotiations as a collaborative exercise with the goal of ensuring everyone walks away happy. Employ the strategies detailed above, and only sign when you're confident and satisfied with the agreement. If in doubt, a lawyer can help.