Sellers from Mars and Buyers from Venus - VI

 Excerpt from my upcoming book at - "Sellers from Mars and Buyers from Venus - Elements of Nature Meet B2B Sales" 

How a Legal Service Counsel will engage with others 

Legal Services
Legal services are a corporate function where a legal counsel provides support in enabling or executing a business operation. In the case of business to business (B2B) sales, a legal counsel works closely with the buyers' legal team, internal sales, product engineering teams and other stakeholders to assist in quantifying, negotiating and closing a deal. The key responsibilities of a legal counsel are following: 

preparing, modifying and negotiating a legal framework for contractually engaging with buyers like the master service agreement (MSA), statement of work (SOW) and purchase order 
do due diligence, provide assessment and guidance on the following risks: 
o business
lock-in commitment and its implications
probability of damages arising and the magnitude of the impact from such damages 
service continuity plans for events arising from insolvency or government actions or regulatory requirement
exit options and handovers 
syncing or adapting the agreement with the current situation, an example in today's world like adapting force majeure to include a pandemic 
o finance
the right balance of warranties offered and excluded
managing cost spillover arising from certain clauses
additional cost or taxes, usage charges like overage charges
insurance expectations to cover the risk
o legal
legal compliances like sanction, privacy, data privacy and anti-bribery
licensing issues, if any
reasonable exclusions and limits on indemnities and liabilities
managing the risk matrix and governance approvals 
ensuring the deal is closed and signed off

So, let us explore how a seller's side legal counsel engages with buyers through the lens of the elemental attributes learned in the previous sections.

Legal Counsel for Earth Element – Calm & Stable

Risk Assessment 
o driven by a minimal risk appetite and fear of failure means these natives are pedantic across exposure to any business, financial and legal risk 
Contractual Agreement 
o slow in drafting and preparing and sharing with stakeholders, semantically strong, their attention to detail is good, and they prefer long term agreements 
o they are driven by relentless effort and status quo; the emphasis is on using the standard terms and conditions, ringfencing the scope with a maximum tolerance
o they are not open to any financial penalties or liabilities in case there is a failure or delay in delivery  
o they are slow and sluggish in following up with the customer for closure   
Negotiation Style
o they have a lot of patience and are good listeners, hide information, 
o they lack transparency and principles, can often be deceptive or employ pressure tactics
o they are accommodative and let others take control and respond only when necessary
o they speak slowly with a deep voice, sluggish in response and react at their own pace
o they are good listeners and are structured and semantically driven

Next: Coming up 

  • Cheat Sheet for Sales Planning and Execution using Five Elements   
  • How a Procurement Executive will Engage
  • How B2B Sales are different in Service vs Product 
Previous articles can be read here
  • Part 5 on How a Marketing Manager will engage can be read here
  • Part 4 on How a Sponsoring Executive will engage can be read here
  • Part 3 on Negotiation Styles in B2B Sales can be read here 
  • Part 2 on Persona Mapping in B2B Sales can be read here 
  • Part 1 on Marrying Elements of Nature with B2B Sales can be read here