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Negotiating Contracts

July 1, 2010

 Negotiating client contracts is a task most women entrepreneurs don’t like doing. By our female nature, we are more comfortable saying yes, giving away more than we should, and not towing the line with clients and vendors who ask or expect too much. We tend to give in which costs us time, money and resources to make our clients happy. In the end, we don’t receive the monetary compensation we need to be financially successful.
 
A few days ago I was with one of my female clients who is an expert at negotiating contracts. The key to getting what she wants is her ability to be non-emotional, frank and unwavering in her request. She doesn’t take no for an answer. She works hard to seal the deal. She is motivated exclusively by her bottom line. In the end, she might not be the most pleasant person to do business with, but she gets what she asks for and her operation is financially successful.
 
I’ve learned what makes her so good at getting the best deal for her company is her forthright negotiating skills. She has no problem putting what she wants on the table or walking away from a deal if her expectations are not met. Most women entrepreneurs don’t operate this way but there could be a lesson to learn from her approach.
 
If it’s been a while since you reviewed your own negotiating skills, take an inventory of how you make deals with clients, vendors and associates. During this economic period, every contract is important, so make sure your negotiating skills are up to par. If they aren’t, educate or train yourself on improving them. Remember there is nothing wrong in asking for what you need. It’s vital to keeping your business strong and successful.

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