Companies need to be able to confidently and compellingly to answer the question, "what is it you want from this deal?" before initiating negotiations.
However, in our experience, the obvious is frequently neglected. The results can include:
- Being bundled by the partner into their preferred structure, which may be inappropriate.
- Entering a protracted and often expensive period of negotiation.
- Seeking to change tack, causing annoyance and stress to stakeholders and potentially damaging your reputation as a potential partner.
- Ultimately doing a less good deal - if you don't know what you want, you are less likely to get it or anything near it.
If you spend more time articulating and challenging the business rational upfront, you will smooth the way to a swifter and usually more successful negotiation.