This happens more than once so don’t be fooled. The deal gets negotiated with the business and again with procurement and legal.
KNOW whether of not your objectives are aligned with the client – what about others who will participate in the negotiation process? Have a wingman (supervisor) to kick tires and help with issues and options. Don’t fly solo. If you are not aligned with client, know why not – UNDERSTAND THE SHIFT and go backwards. Who is negotiating actively and who is behind the scenes at the client and on your side (Both sides)? Who is pushing the negotiation and what issues … do you have clarity? (objectives, players, roles, issues, obstacles, path to success, expectations)? Be cognizant of which negotiation is taking place – “ELEPHANT!”
THINK & ACT. Never liaison between prospect & executive heavy – Good/bad-cop? DO NOT NEGOTIATE MULTIPLE POINTS. One issue at a time, leave room for subsequent rounds. Force your negotiation on the SINGLE IMPORTANT ISSUE (price, feature, service or something else). In other words, when they raise their points, get the conversation to zero in on what they care about most and stick to that issue. Remember to do a competitive check-in. Are you being benchmarked or is someone else? Are you running parallel processes yet? Procurement / Legal take time. Now is a good time to introduce your Account Management and Implementation teams. Keep selling business. Professionalism and structure have big impact on the confidence that you are establishing.