The success of negotiations depends in great part on the relationship established between the parties at the beginning of the process. If you establish mutual trust early on, you will find the process of buying or selling a business a much easier prospect than if you feel the person on the other side of the negotiating table is your adversary.
Use the following checklist as a guide to the preparatory work you need to do to begin negotiations in a positive manner and establish trust between buyer and seller.
Buyer, do you know:
___ ___ What information you need from your seller to make sure his or her business is one worth pursuing?
___ ___ What research you need to do before you approach your seller?
___ ___ How you will convince your seller that you are serious about pursuing sale negotiations?
___ ___ What personal and financial information you will share with your seller at the outset?
___ ___ What competitors you will consult as you begin your pre-purchase research?
___ ___ How you will approach those competitors?
___ ___ What information competitors will be reluctant to provide to you?
___ ___ What information you can get from manufacturers and vendors in the industry?
___ ___ What questions you need a professional to answer -- either your own professional accountant or attorney or the seller's?
Seller, do you know: