Regardless of how much you know about term sheets, you still need to be able to negotiate a good deal. We’ve found that most people, including many lawyers, are weak negotiators. Fortunately for our current and future portfolio company executives, they can read about everything we know online and in this book, so in addition to being better negotiators, they now know all of our moves and can negotiate more effectively against us.
There are plenty of treatises on negotiation; however, this chapter walks through some negotiation tactics that have worked well for us over the years. Although this book is primarily about financings, we’ll talk about a range of negotiation tactics that you can use in your life, and we illustrate some of the different types of characters you’ll meet along the way.
What Really Matters?
There are only three things that matter when negotiating a financing: achieving a good and fair result, not killing your personal relationship getting there, and understanding the deal that you are striking.
It has been said that a good deal means neither party is happy. This might be true in litigation or acquisitions, but if neither party is happy following the closing of a venture financing, then you have a real problem. Remember, the financing is only the beginning of the relationship and a small part at that. Building the company together while having a productive and good relationship is what matters. A great starting point is for ...