Mark Suster has another great post on negotiating tactics. This one dealing with how to handle the laundry list of items that need to be addressed after the first draft of an agreement. The best way to handle these is to take them as a package, rather than negotiating them “piecemeal” (line by line). Here’s the money quote:
The problem with negotiating piecemeal … is that you trade on every item. You don’t prioritize the issues which you really care about. If you don’t want to give a millimeter on one item you have a hard time doing that point-by-point. Done as a “package deal” you can say, “I gave in on these 5 issues that you asked for. On this issue I can’t give.” That’s much harder to pull off piecemeal.
This is the reason attorneys trade redlines of entire documents rather than e-mails back and forth about each separate item. It’s faster and it gets each party closer to where they want to be on the items they care most about. Win-Win!
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