The growth of Mackey Advisors has brought us to the threshold of buying our own building. Just recently, I found a fabulous, unique space and I was prepared to make the purchase, as I could see Mackey Advisors growing and thriving there. After weeks of exploration and negotiation, I sadly walked away. Negotiations involve give and take, but it seemed that Mackey Advisors was doing all the giving and the developer was doing all the taking. As I step back, I realize that fundamentally, we have different approaches to doing business.
Business has traditionally been conducted as a win/lose venture. I have something to sell to you. You want a bargain. The deal is consummated when one of the parties feel they have the upper hand. I have not conducted business in this way for many years. My attitude is one more aligned with partnership, where both parties’ needs are heard, respected, honored, and met to the fullest extent possible. Compromise is the name of the game.
If I am in need of a product or service, I want to exchange my resources with a vendor who will meet or exceed my expectations at a fair price. AND I want the vendor’s price to support their operation and to allow a profit. After all, if they do well, they will continue to provide the valuable service of being attentive to and meeting my needs.
In all of our ways of “coming together” financially, as vendors, customers, business partners, or even spouses, we can do so from a place of win/lose, or we can adopt a win/win form of “partnership.” Not partnership in the traditional sense, but partnership in the sense of mutual respect, knowing that we are both in this together, and that we both have needs that must be met. It’s still competition, but with a cooperative twist. After all, if I thrive at your expense, where does that leave me the next time I need to partner with someone to accomplish my goals?
From this place, where each party looks to find a way to support, cooperate with, and meet the needs of the other, win/win is created. You might call it “cooperative negotiation”, and it is a transformational place from which to conduct business. In this place of win/win, both parties thrive. In the place of win/lose, one or both parties are damaged by the relationship. Think of all the dysfunctions that occur around money because one person is trying to get more than the other. Think of the possibility in a world where business is conducted in a place of win/win. What world do you choose? It is yours to create!