Negotiating Tactics for Business

Presented by: Michael McGee and Michael Holtz, Partners at Dentons Bingham Greenbaum LLP


Date: 10/20/2021

Mr. Holtz and Mr. McGee share some of their insights about the negotiation process and a few areas of practical advice to use in negotiations. The framework for transactional negotiations has three interrelated factors. First is the size, complexity, and duration of the transaction. For major transactions like buying or selling a business, the talks can go on for weeks or months. Second is the players, lawyers often lead to “major” transactions, but clients pull the trigger. Third, the setting, which could be in-person or even over a phone call.

Preparation is key in the course of any negotiation. So the first point that Mr. Mcgee wanted to stress is that you must know your subject matter which allows you to project confidence which is important in a negotiation. 

Some practical examples where you’d use negotiation are lease agreements, purchase agreements, confidentiality agreements, and non-compete agreements. Lease agreements determine leverage. Purchase agreements may or may not be negotiable, but long-term agreements are more likely to be negotiable. In confidentiality agreements, you protect the customers and supplier lists, IP, trade secrets, confidential information entrusted to you, etc. They also watch for overbreadth, indemnification, and regulated industries. Lastly, non-compete agreements protect existing and prospective businesses and the rest of the workforce.

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