How to Make Them Low-Risk and High-Upside
Contracts are often the first formal communication we have with a client or customer. It’s your opportunity to set the tone for the relationship, and the way your contracts are written will reveal your intent.
Establish trust early, and it takes the edge off the stress of a new business relationship. Start from a deficit, and you’ll never get the benefit of the doubt.
In my business, I try to put my clients’ minds at ease at the contract stage. Therefore, the way I view contracts is a little different than what I learned from my days as an acquisition editor in the publishing industry. Instead of a “letter of the law” approach, I tend to be more lenient – especially when it comes to the termination clause.
I don’t want to trap a client in relationship that’s not working – no matter what our contract says. Listen to Episode 110 here (or in your favorite pod player) to hear a couple real-world examples from my consulting business.
- The ultimate example of trapping someone in a contract comes from publishing: The dreaded Right of First Refusal Clause is standard boilerplate in the Author Agreement. Authors often sign the contract without questioning it – which is a huge mistake. In the episode, I cover the arrogance of this clause and what authors should do about it.
- NDAs are another example of needless contracts that are not only ineffectual, but have the potential to damage the relationship early on. To hear my rant, I have a whole episode dedicated to this instrument of suspicion: Non-Disclosure Agreements – Mistrust Is Not a Good Starting Point.
- If you want to work with me one-on-one, please contact me for a free initial assessment (to see if it’s a good match for you): http://controlmousemedia.com/contact.