There’s panic on the analysts’ floor of Axe Capital. Taylor Mason is interviewing to hire quants (quantitative analysts, most often nerds who use FinTech algorithms for trades). If you’re familiar with Showtime’s TV show Billions, you might remember this scene. For those who haven’t seen the show, it’s based on Wall Street hedge fund management.
One recurrent theme of the show is the critical role negotiation plays in most aspects of high-stakes trade, power politics, and personal relationships. The show reflects a lot of real-life scenarios where give-and-take is applied to create contracts and agreements. For FinTechs, a negotiation seminar can support the adoption of the following key negotiation strategies. These strategies help manage relationships with investors, cofounders, clients, and advisers.
Keep Your Cool
Be very careful about your emotional attachment to the deal under discussion. It’s easy to get too excited when a prospective investor waves money in your direction.
An expert-led seminar can equip your FinTech specialists to take emotions out of transactions and keep calm. Inexperienced negotiators may feel strong emotions when they attach their personal expectations to the ego and monetary rewards.
FinTechs often negotiate with people far more experienced in high-stakes negotiations. This can include corporate development professionals, venture capitalists, and portfolio managers. A strong show of emotion can reveal a chink in your armor which more savvy dealmakers can exploit.
Listen to What’s (Not) Said
Too often, people go into negotiations with preconceived notions of what their clients and buyers may say. You can increase your negotiation success rate by paying keen attention to what is and isn’t said.
Read between the lines to identify objections, opinions, and hurdles. Address what you read between the lines rather than just responding to what you assume is being said.
Know Your Target Price
Do your research before you enter talks. Also, make sure you take into account all aspects of the deal before settling on a price. When you know your target price, you’re better equipped to justify your ask.
Not having a target price or range is a sign of lack of preparation. If your clients and investors sense that you lack a target price, they may find a chance to discredit your valuation. They might then push for a less attractive price offer.
Create a Competitive Environment
Most Fintech industry leaders understand the value of competition. If your FinTech services are in demand from multiple financial services providers, your worth goes up. You can create a competitive environment by pitching your product or service to competing firms.
Competition can validate your firm’s worth and may appeal to the competitive nature of the people involved. Competition among your prospects provides you with options while removing anxiety and desperation. Heightened competition may even tilt negotiations in your favor, enabling you to walk away with a favorable deal.
Don’t Negotiate Against Yourself
Once you make an offer, do not make a counteroffer against your price or terms. Let your prospect make their counteroffer. Use the prospect’s suggested terms to claim value and strengthen your position.
The prospect’s counteroffer gives you the chance to address challenges. You can also sell your value and demonstrate how suitable your product or service is.
Use your initial offer, rather than the prospect’s counteroffer, as the anchor. When your initial offer is the anchor, you’re more likely to find a price closer to your target. When you use the prospect’s offer as the anchor, the prospect may push for even lower prices or terms that are not favorable to your position.
Make Simultaneous Multiple Offers
Fintech solutions work in different ways to give investors an improved competitive stance. For instance, some solutions may give an investor advantages when going long on trades. Others may offer more efficient fast links to lenders.
Presenting multiple solutions provides your prospect the chance to choose the one that best suits their needs. When the prospect can’t decide between two offers, you get a chance to work together and create a hybrid solution that lets you create and claim more value. In instances where the prospect rejects all offers, you can ask guided questions to gain insights on your prospect’s needs.
Offer Contingent Terms
The financial and technology industries are almost always in a state of flux. New challenges emerge even as new solutions are created. The high rate of change and innovation may create uncertainty for future performance.
To tackle objections arising from uncertainties, you can use seminar training to discover contingent terms that you can include in your FinTech contracts. A contingent term is an “if, then” clause that works to reduce risks about future uncertainties.
For example, you can pitch your offer with a promise to deliver results under budget and within a particular timeline. You then insert a contingent clause that provides a hefty discount to the client in case of delivery delays. Contingent clauses contain penalties for noncompliance and incentives for compliance.
Include Clauses for Damages
In the highly fluid FinTech industry, some risks can’t be predicted and included in a contingent agreement. An additional way to create a win-win agreement is to negotiate damages up front.
Your contract may include clauses detailing how much you receive if your client breaches the agreement. It may also detail what penalties you have to pay for noncompliance.
Be Willing to Walk Away
One of the most difficult strategies to learn at the negotiation table or at seminars is finding the confidence to walk away from a deal that’s not favorable. It’s especially difficult when you’re facing pressure from cofounders, investors, and lenders to deliver quick results.
An unfavorable deal may offer some temporary comfort but might mean long-term negative implications. For instance, rushing into a poor deal may take up most of your time and resources. You could then be tied down with little leeway to open yourself to growth opportunities.