Do Better Deals Workshop

Are you Begging or Negotiating?


After attending this workshop, you’ll be better prepared to:

  • Identify and counter vendor ploys
  • Use RFPs to negotiate with power
  • Maintain leverage throughout your negotiations
  • Utilize sourcing/procurement best practices
  • Increase vendor accountability
  • Maximize your contractual protections
  • Develop advantageous relationships with your key suppliers
  • Prioritize deal objectives

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Available At-Your-Site

Online or In-person

Customized to Your Specific Needs

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Designed to help you maximize your leverage throughout the procurement process, this workshop has helped large and small companies, governments, and organizations of all sizes save billions of dollars during the past forty years. By focusing on best practices in a variety of areas (RFIs, RFPs, contract drafting, negotiations, contract management, and vendor management), you can begin improving your deals, increasing vendor performance, and reducing costs.The procurement of goods and services is not an isolated event—it’s a process—and to do it well requires teamwork. Every stage of the process involves an opportunity for you to strengthen or weaken your bargaining position with your vendors. Whether you are directly or indirectly involved in the sourcing and procurement of goods and services, this class will help you get the most out of your vendors—no matter what type of deal you’re doing.


Online – Each day

11:30 – 1:00Session
1:00 – 1:45Break
1:45 – 3:15Session
3:15 – 3:30Break
3:30 – 4:00Session


CTPEICN courses qualify for CTPE credits. Caucus awards up to 12.5 continuing education hours to attendees of this workshop toward their Certified Technology Procurement Executive certification.
C.P.M.Those successfully completing this workshop can receive up to 12.5 C.P.M. points. ISM’s consent to award points is not an endorsement of this program or its contents.
C.L.E.Those successfully completing this workshop can receive up to 13.5 C.L.E. units.

3 Ways to Register

  • Register Online Now
  • Register by Phone: 407.740.0700
    Monday–Friday between 8:30 am and 5:00 pm ET
  • Register by Fax: 407.740.0368 using our Fax Registration Form

Multi-registration discounts are available. Call us now to find out your level of discount!

Workshop Outline

Your Challenge

Customer Environment—Eight Issues to Address, Including:

  • Low aspirations
  • Sense of urgency
  • Lack of executive support

Relationship Dynamics

  • Customer objectives
  • Vendor objectives

Vendor Environment—Seven Considerations, Including:

  • Highly trained
  • Very motivated
  • Team advantage

The Solution — The Managed Acquisition Process

Form Team

  • Why?— Seven reasons, including:
    • Gains power
    • Reduces second guessing
  • Who? — Just
    the people impacted, including representatives
    • Finance
    • End users
    • Legal/contracts
    • Senior management
    • Sourcing/procurement
    • Product/service expertise
    • Operational management
    • Others impacted by the deal
  • Structure — Two-tiered:
    • Two-tiered
      • Advisory
      • Table Team
    • Team size
    • Roles
    • Responsibilities

Assess Baseline/Marketplace

  • Assess Baseline
    • Type of project
      • Something new
      • Modifications required
    • Documented successes
    • Areas for improvement
    • Concerns
    • Financial information
    • Business relationships
    • Internal expertise
  • Assess Marketplace
    • Conduct external assessment
    • Issue request for information
      • Benefits
      • Four main sections
    • Conduct additional research—Six key ways, including:
      • User groups
      • Research firms
    • Evaluate research

Results or Resources

  • Contracting for Resources
    • Vendor responsibilities
    • Customer responsibilities
  • Contracting for Results
    • Key concepts
    • Vendor responsibilities
    • Customer responsibilities
    • Management tools

Prepare Position Paper

  • Why? — Four primary benefits,
    • Gain authority
    • Use as game plan
  • Sample Topics – Eight major categories, including:
    • Negotiation considerations
    • Potential vendors’ strengths and weaknesses

Collect/Prioritize Objectives

  • Collect Objectives
    • Who?
    • What?
    • Benefits – Five key reasons, including:
      • Improve contractual protections
      • Refine project scope and improve focus
  • Prioritize Objectives
    • Who?
    • Why?
    • Benefits – Six advantages, including:
      • Decide without pressure
      • Establish decision model
    • How?
      • Rate individually
      • Rank as a team

Gain Management Approval

  • Why?
  • How?

Conduct Bidders’ Conference

  • What?
  • Who?
    • Customer personnel
    • Representatives from all of the potential vendors
  • Why
  • Eleven advantages, including:
    • Increases competitive proposals
    • Offers additional clarifying opportunities
    • Reduces incumbent’s overconfidence
    • Logistics – Thirteen considerations, including:
      • Meeting room size and layout
      • Review and manage the agenda
      • Coordinate arrival of the vendors

Develop Contract/RFP

  • Develop Contract
    • Benefits — Seven advantages to using your contract, including:
      • Improve quality
      • Qualify vendors
    • Objectives — Six major
      goals, including:
      • Fit the transaction
      • Facilitate monitoring and enforcement
    • Enforceability — Converting “vendorspeak” into
      meaningful language
    • Contract hierarchy
      • Philosophy
      • Concepts
      • Details
  • Develop Request for Proposal
    • Functions
    • Benefits – Ten advantages, including:
      • Results in better specifications
      • Proposals are more specific
    • Objectives — Seven important
      goals, including:
      • Increase control
      • Maximize competition
    • Content — Six sections,
      • General procedures
      • Your contract

Evaluate Potential Vendors

  • Who?
    • Options
    • Considerations
  • What?—Three critical concepts
  • How?
    • Selecting a methodology
    • Team orientation and tasks
    • Seven primary steps

Select Vendor(s)

  • Select one or more vendors
  • Execute the contract(s)
  • Notify non-selected vendor(s)

Conduct Competitive Negotiations

  • Overview
    • Multiple vendors in the zone
    • Power shifts over time
  • Top-down negotiations
  • Guiding principles — Twelve thoughts, including:
    • Negotiate only when you are prepared
    • Don’t rely on verbal promises or assurances
    • Competition is your strongest negotiation ally
  • Preparation
    • Negotiation roles – Seven key roles, including
      • Observer
      • Emissary
    • Identifying and maintaining power
    • Developing the negotiation agenda
    • Conducting negotiation simulations
    • Meeting prior to negotiations
  • Ploys and tactics
    • Offers
    • Counteroffers
    • Aspiration levels
  • Negotiating – Twelve factors for success, including:
    • Strategy implementation
    • Asking questions
    • Linking concessions

Manage Contract/Vendor

  • Manage Contract
    • Why?— Six critical reasons, including:
      • To ensure compliance
      • To enforce our rights
    • Who?
      • Options
      • Key Personnel traits
    • How?— Ten important concepts, including:
      • Contract management tools
      • Rolling estoppel
  • Manage Vendor
    • Why?— Six benefits, including:
      • Gain flexibility
      • Improve relationships
    • Who?
      • Options
      • Factors for sucess
    • How?
      • Define roles
      • Assign duties
      • Select vendors
    • Tasks— Ten key concepts, including:
      • Conduct status meetings
      • Develop improvement plans

Keys to Success

Thirteen critical factors, including:

  • Information
  • Attitude
  • Alternatives
The Truths of Contracting Ten important principles to remember, including:​
  • If it’s not in the contract, it’s not in the deal.
  • Contract and relationship management are critical.
  • It is NOT a relationship of trust; it is NOT a partnership.