3 REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD NEGOTIATE YOUR CONTRACT
# 1- THE SHOE PROBABLY DOESN’T FIT.
The first reason to negotiate your contract, rather than to sign whatever document is put in front of you is that most business owners are using contracts they either pulled off the Internet, inherited from a previous job, or is an amalgam of various other contracts which may or may not relate to that specific industry.
These contracts often have lots and lots of different clauses that in no way relate to the deal on the table.
This reminds me of the story of the daughter who chopped off both ends of the roast before putting it in the pot because her mother always did it. Then later she found out her mother did it because she had a smaller pot and the roast wouldn’t fit.
If these causes are left in the contract, litigation may result because the clauses may contradict the original intent of the parties, and because the parties did not read or understand the clauses they skipped over them when signing.
#2- YOU WILL GAIN THE RESPECT OF THE OTHER PARTY.
Have you ever looked over at contract and started crossing off terms and adding different information? Maybe it’s just because I’m a contract attorney, but it is exhilarating. Not only does the other party look at you like you just drew a mustache on the Mona Lisa, but they also are impressed at your ability to understand the language and your attention to detail.
In a dispute, they will be more likely to give you the benefit of the doubt, because they will perceive you as a sharp business person.
This doesn’t quite work for all situations, especially when you are dealing with an entry level worker in a large company. Furthermore, changing the terms of the contract will undoubtedly slow the transaction, but if the transaction is significant in any way, I recommend doing it.
#3- IT CAN ONLY GET BETTER.
The current contract is the bar. Any changes made to that contract will only be to your advantage. If they reject your proposals or changes, then it will only revert to the original contract. You can’t lose. This is a win-win situation.
If you’re successful you have a more advantageous contract for yourself, if they reject the changes and you decide to use the original contract, you will earn their respect by your attention to detail.