Case Study : Negotiating the Spirit of the Deal
Negotiating is not only about setting an economical written contract. Forgetting the « social » contract by cultivating a shared understanding of each party’s expectations can often lead to disruptions or even failure. This article highlights the importance of the underlying contract combined with the ongoing social contract. It underlines the risks and common misperceptions that often occur without this awareness.
The underlying Social contract describes the fundamental nature of the deal, a « mind » alignment bearing in mind everyone’s culture. It helps to understand the parties ‘expectations by answering : o o
What is the real nature , extent, duration of the agreement…? How will decisions be made, handle unexpected changes, solve disputes, …?
Treating those questions enables to limit misunderstandings of each parties before entering to the formal written contract.(proprietary information, scope of work, process to launch the deal, economic issues, …) .
Written words aren’t enough and can be misinterpreted
Some examples show that both parties can be following the contract without meeting their own goal and expectations. The result can be somehow a disaster. Setting and keeping the spirit of the cooperation is a chance of a making a successful work.
1. Preparation / Mind alignment Building a strong cooperation implies taking into consideration each parties’ culture. Preparation is the most critical step in the negotiation process Specific objectives are established. Effective negotiation team is built.
Clear and concise long-term contracts govern successful alliances.
2. Building the contract Even when using the same words, definitions or actions can be different. On going improvement clauses are standard in most alliances. A problem resolution methodology must be in place.
3. Continuous communication and alignment monitoring: Finding compromise and a frequent communicating can...
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