Consultative Consulting Agreements

Congratulations! You have decided to start a consulting business so other business leaders may access the wisdom you have accumulated in your career.

 

Here’s a tool to help you prepare a tightly-focused Consulting Agreement that won’t slow down your sales process.

 

In our post Write a Sales Contract that Speeds up Getting to Yes, we showed how you can create a concise sales contract that gives you a competitive advantage over companies that still insist on using a 20-page monstrosity.

 

You can use the same consultative approach with a business-loving lawyer to produce your Consulting Agreement.

 

Here’s how to adapt that approach for the idiosyncrasies of consulting:

 

Decide now, before you start seeking consulting engagements, the limits of your business.

 

What types of work will you do and (maybe more importantly) refuse to do?

 

How much cash flow do you need each month in order to take care of yourself and your family?

 

Do you need to own the intellectual property produced by your work?

 

Identify the risks inherent in your type of consulting, and then think about what would be a fair way to allocate those risks between you and your client.  In what ways do things typically go wrong, and who should bear the burden when they do?

 

Performance risk – what things might prevent you from completing your defined tasks?

 

Implementation risk – which party is responsible for implementing your work product?  What happens if the client is responsible for implementation, but decides not to implement (or delays implementation)?

 

Collection risk – how credit-worthy is your client?  Consider asking for a partial payment before you start working.

 

Evaluate the risks of bodily injury, reputational injury, and cyber injury. Consult with a risk and insurance professional who can help you identify and manage these risks before something goes wrong.

 

Call us for help preparing your agreement, and for referrals to excellent risk professionals.

 

Stuart Blake

Mobile – (949) 842-9379

sblake@innovacounsel.com

 

Michael Oswald

Mobile – 208.914.3086

moswald@innovacounsel.com

 

www.innovacounsel.com

 

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