Wednesday, October 02, 2013

3 Things Entrepreneurs Get Wrong When Negotiating

"Show me the money!" -- the famous line from the movie Jerry Maguire -- carries the sort of gusto and optimism that is ear candy to entrepreneurs. But as a professional negotiation coach with nearly three decades' in the trenches, I associate that catchy phrase with something else entirely.

The reality is most entrepreneurs begin to think about negotiation -- this includes the word "negotiation," setting up a meeting, and the overall negotiation process -- only when it's time to be shown the cash. In other words, in the minds of just about every small business owner, a negotiation is when the money talks.

Nothing could be further from the truth, and I can't imagine the millions of dollars entrepreneurs have lost, over the lifespan of their businesses, by defining negotiation in such a limited way. Negotiation is the effort to bring about agreement between two or more parties, with all parties having the right to veto.

Here's what you're probably doing wrong, and how to get it right.

Rethinking how to negotiate

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