Customized Contract Negotiation and Management Skills Programs

People who negotiate and manage performance, outcome-based contracts for a living need an enhanced skill set. Unfortunately, most negotiation skills training programs are not keeping pace with the increase in contract complexity. Many programs are too generic and out of touch with what it takes to negotiate and manage complicated terms and conditions, pricing models and risk scenarios.

Customized, tactical in-person training and coaching programs are specifically designed based on the results from my contract negotiation skills assessment, participant interviews, and contract reviews. Unlike the web-based program, each in-person program offers customized content, customized role plays, and customized case studies.

“I just wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed your class yesterday. I definitely had some “Aha!” moments and will take those learnings with me going forward. Also, when you showed us the New Yorker slide with the dogs saying, “It’s not enough that we succeed. Cats must also fail.” I thought it was refreshing hearing that since there are a lot of people out there actually that have that mentality. I always say to myself, “Other’s success isn’t my failure”.” Training Participant, on-line retail company.

Want to sample a training session? Check out my free New Rules for Negotiating 10 Minute Learning Sessions.  You’ll get a 10 minute webinar, handouts and a chapter from my training manual.

Tactical training addresses the day-to-day experiences your team faces. The training and coaching sessions are not theoretical, though there is substantial research to support best practices. Training sessions offer group discussions, one-on-one partner role playing, and individual drafting exercises.

Customized training combines your teams’ contracts and common scenarios to fully explore contract negotiation and management topics and their application at work. By discussing your organization’s template contracts, people immediately apply the concept to practice.

“It was a great class with a lot of interaction and conversation. The procurement team learned some valuable pieces and in particular, it changed the way they thought about negotiation.” Training Director, on-line retail company.

Training and coaching sessions focus on the entire contract life-cycle from planning to contract signing and then to management. By attending training as a team, people can learn tips and tricks from colleagues to quickly prepare for and address scenarios common to your organization.

 “This coaching session has been stellar! I’ve wanted someone to walk me through the arguments the supplier is making (to some terms in the contract) so I could give them a reasoned response to support our terms. Thank you.” P.A. Contract Administrator, public utility

A typical Contract Negotiation and Management Skills training and coaching project includes:


  • Negotiation skills assessment with a findings report
  • Contract(s) review
  • One-on-one interviews


  • Customized training session(s)
  • Company specific role play and case studies
  • New Rules for Negotiating training manual


  • Individual coaching sessions
  • Web-based training (on-line learning)

Range of Skills

Most contracts these days are complex, and require a variety of skills ranging from:

Designing an agreement using complex arrangements such as incentive payments, outcome based metrics and innovation committees to drive and manage change.

Drafting skills to accurately document the myriad of agreements made over the course of the negotiations so the legal department has a clear understanding of the deal points.

Facilitation and internal negotiation skills to corral internal stakeholders to agree on requirements, such as SOW’s, SLA’s, KPI’s and governance structures.

Conflict resolution skills when the inevitable happens – something goes wrong and needs to be fixed.

“Thank you. I appreciate knowing where our customers are coming from (on our terms and conditions). I feel more confident to negotiate these items and not escalate to the V.P. of Sales all the time.” B.K., Sales Representative, global manufacturing.

Typical Topics

My programs give people the tools and techniques to negotiate complex customer/supplier relationships. My programs focus on topics such as:

“I loved your training and have implemented some aspects into my work already. Thanks again!” Brody Karmenzind, sales, Pandora

  • Understanding and using a variety of pricing arrangements from the more traditional firm fixed fee and time and materials, to hybrid models that incorporate incentive payments based on performance measures.
  • Choosing metrics, SLA’s, and using scorecards and reporting to drive performance.
  • Drafting skills to accurately convey deal points, such as those found in SOW’s, KPI’s, SLA’s, to the legal team to avoid confusion and renegotiation.
  • Understanding and using a Total Cost of Ownership, Should Cost or Activity Based Costing (for services) analysis to help negotiate better pricing for the purchase of goods.
  • Negotiation techniques to get to a consensus.

“Now, I will be able to provide better information to the legal department and help speed up the (contract) review process when the supplier has changes or exceptions to the standard terms. I am a better partner to the business and to legal.” L.E., Contract Specialist, public utility.

A Typical Program Includes

New Rules for Negotiating training manual based on my books Getting to We, and Negotiation Rules, as well as a variety of my other written materials.

  • Customized in person training sessions ranging from two to three days: Skills include specific steps to align conversations to a common goal, specific techniques to negotiate terms and conditions and tools for having difficult conversations.
  • 65% (roughly) interactive exercises, partner work, role plays, fish bowl conversations etc. to practice the skills.
  • Web based learning on targeted topics.
  • Coaching and mentoring during the in person and web sessions.
  • Coaching and mentoring after the sessions.
  • The Average Participant The average participants of this program are:
    • Buy-side: Purchasing, contract administrators or specialists, vendor/supplier managers, and operational people who have responsibility to negotiate additional P.O.’s, change orders or work authorizations with their suppliers.
    • Sell-side: Account managers, customer service (or inside sales) managers, their contracting professionals, and all other operational people who have responsibility to negotiate additional P.O.’s, change orders or work authorizations with their customers.

Let’s set up a time to talk about how to develop your team’s negotiation skills.

“Jeanette, Just to let you know we signed our MSA last Friday.  Unbelievable time to negotiate – but at least we finalized. Thanks for your help in getting to this point.” R.H. EVP, Facility Resources

Jeanette Nyden: | 206-723-3472