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I love dealmaking. I agree with Robert Ringer’s observation about dealmaking:
“There are no statistics to prove it, but after years of experience, I’m absolutely convinced that dealmaking is the highest-paid profession in the world.”
I think the creative pieces and bringing ambiguous, and often disparate parties and value together is exhilarating. Great deals help everyone to win and get what they want.
Designing those deals requires insight and many cycles to drive a win and agreement. It’s why I often tell business partners that dealmaking is about going slow. Then fast.
The slow part of deal-making is the art of the deal. Building rapport and relationships. Establishing trust. Putting the ideas forth that might take root. These are the building blocks that go faster with established relationships and much activity, but in the beginning of new ventures and relationships, they are slow to put forth and germinate. Often times, you have to push hard.
Fortunately, deals are everywhere. They need leadership, vision and management to develop. If you sell a known product, then your dealmaking has a lot of the components already set up.
If you have a custom, creative dealmaking offering, then there is a lot of time collaborating, designing and creating something from nothing.
I think that one of the best strategies is to be ready. Mise en Place. Anticipate that new conversations, opportunities, relationships and timing will come in the next weeks and months. Being ready by doing your homework, studying, gathering insights, having fast, efficient systems, and getting smarter are required to support the slow part.
If you have done the work then the fast part tends to take care of itself. The convergence of the details, negotiating, having solid agreements and delivering value transitions the dealmaking over to keeping your commitments.
You can always get better at the fast part. The slow part is where the payoff is if you pay attention to your approach, preparation, and cadence. Where can you improve?