4 Questions That Will Maximize The Value Of Your Deals

It's not all about the dollars and cents in a negotiation...what are the other bits of sweetness that would make your business  that much better ? Dig deep, get creative and get that value!

Sometimes I read an article that gets me all fired up...exactly what happened with the great Op-Ed in the Business of Fashion – “Should Small Labels Accept Poor Payment Terms from Prestigious Retailers?” by Archer Adams. Two elements of Archer's piece have stuck with me – firstly, that he wasn’t afraid to question the terms proposed to his company, even though the retailer was a big guy. Great example of not being afraid to ask questions, negotiate and work towards getting the best deal possible. But more than that, I think that Archer hit the nail on the head in realizing that there’s more value to a business deal than just the financial aspects.

“If I accept their terms, I stand to get significant benefits, including greater brand visibility, increased brand credibility and more sales. But can I find a way to tough it out financially while I wait to get paid? Is the potential financial pain worth the above?”

A lot of the time, business cases and negotiation decisions are metric and finance driven. How exactly do you quantify the upsides to a deal that may not deliver the best ROI according to the accountants? It’s possible to get really creative with crafting weighted decision matrices or decision-making trees, but really, you can’t.

Archer Adams, other small labels and most entrepreneurs have the benefit of not being tied to large corporate decision-making structures. So even though there aren’t firm numbers or predictable results attached, the knowledge that a deal will improve visibility, recognition or credibility is real. Is valuable. And can be blended into negotiations to great benefit.

It's about more than the money, honey.

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Uncover Value With These Questions

What do you want this business deal to do for you?

(And the answer isn’t just ‘generate revenue’ – dig deeper)

If I don’t get these things from this deal, would I have to pay for it elsewhere?

(Visibility can be bought –what kind of campaign would you need to launch to match the benefit this deal can bring?)

What do I need more of in my life and business? 

(More time, more energy, more flexibility? Think of what sweetness you'd love to add to your days)

How can I add value for my counterpart?

(Flip the table. Change the perspective. What non-monetary value can you deliver?)

What are the intangibles that bring value to your business? Have you ever trusted your gut in a negotiation, even if the numbers weren’t there? Does your bottom line include more than just classic margin and ROI?