If you own a startup company, chances are you’re going to find yourself or your team making deals, both with investors such as venture capitalists looking to invest in your company and with customers. Negotiations require a specific set of skills that may not be apparent. Luckily, there are courses, such as the negotiation training course, which can help you and your team hone your skills to make your deal-making much more effective.
The Importance of Negotiations for Startups
In most business situations, having the skills needed to walk the tightrope of negotiating deals is important. When it comes to the entrepreneurship of startups, having these skills is important.
There is a heavy reliance on investors and venture capitalists in order to turn ideas into a fully-fledged business. When you’re dealing with investors, it’s important to make sure that you are getting what you need out of the deal without sacrificing too much.
On the other side of the equation, if your startup is selling a product, customer negotiations are likely a key component in your business. Effective negotiation skills can help you build relationships with customers. Negotiation training courses are carefully designed to give your team the tools they need to secure the best deals for you and your business.
Skills You Can Learn
“Be prepared” may be the motto of the Boy Scouts, but it’s also great advice for effective negotiating. For you and your employees, negotiation training can help you identify your company’s priorities in advance of your meeting, so your team is prepared and on the same page.
Effective training can also help you and your team understand the delicate balance of timing in business. Learning this skill can help your team identify when it is the best time to start negotiating or, for example, when to discuss price reductions with customers (Hint: your team should NOT be the ones to bring price reductions into the conversation. Leave that to the customer.)
One of the most effective ways to have a successful meeting is to have control during the discussions, and an effective way to do this is to have confidence in your capabilities. Enrolling in a course in negotiations is a worthwhile investment to help your team understand how they can be confident in the business setting. In class, your team learns simple techniques, such as how to define the terms that the company will not exceed in the deal, and how to stay focused on the end goal.
Often looked at as combative situations, negotiations are best viewed as the building blocks of a mutually beneficial relationship. A well-planned negotiation course can help your team keep these relationships thriving and have your customers coming back for more.
Tips When Negotiating with Investors and Venture Capitalists
Hire a Lawyer
You do not want to go into the negotiations alone. Your investors will no doubt have their own lawyers for this deal, so protect yourself by finding a lawyer that is skilled in business law.
Pick Your Battles
In your discussions with the investors you hope will be planting your seed money, there are often a host of conditions, each with varying degrees of importance. You’ll want to decide which conditions are the most important to you and make sure that these conditions are in line with what you want out of the deal.
You should certainly have a lawyer look over all the details in the term sheet, but it’s ultimately for you to decide what is most important to you and focus on getting those details realized.
Have a Plan B
In the business world, a plan B is usually referred to as a Best Alternative to a Negotiated Agreement, or a BATNA. A plan B offers you leverage, and you can also get a better sense of what you can get out of a meeting. If you’re only dealing with one investor, for example, you may not get the full picture of what you can get, which can lead you to accept a deal that may not be the best for you.
Taking a course in negotiations can help your company by providing training on the necessary skills to embrace life at a startup. Investing in training specific to your goals gives you and your team the best chance at success.