Overheard at Angus Vol. XII: The art of negotiation

Listen to this tasty morsel of a conversation I eavesdropped on just last week . . .

Producer #1:  How are negotiations going with the actors for NAME OF NEW PLAY?

Producer #2:  I came up with a really good plan for the offers.

Producer #1:  Really? What’s that?

Producer #2:  Instead of giving them one offer, I gave them a choice.  $5,000 flat per week, or $4,000 per week plus a percentage of the gross.

Producer #1:  Interesting.   How did that work out?

Producer #2:  They all wanted $5,000 plus a percentage of the gross.

Offering options in a negotiation always seems like a good idea.  You’re being flexible.  You’re allowing the negotiatee to choose their own fiscal fate . . . more or less risk . . . it’s up to them.

The problem is that once you throw out options . . . people only see the best of both . . . and then they want a hybrid.  In other Angus-like words, they want to order off the menu.

So, unless you’re willing to say “take-it-or-leave-it”, don’t lay out different paths for your intended to take.  They’ll just see the best of both options and ask for it all.

And then you’ll be on a path to the poor house.

(For a great book on negotiating, check out this classic.)

 

(Got a comment? I love ‘em, so comment below!  Email subscribers, click here then scroll down, to say what’s on your mind!)

——

FUN STUFF:

– Win two tickets to see Nice Work If You Can Get It on Broadway!  Click here!

– Broadway Investing seminar on 4/14.  Register today!

– Take a Broadway Road Trip from DC on 4/28.  Click here!

Tags:
Comments
  • Kile Ozier says:

    I don’t know that I agree with that.

    Wearing my Producer Hat and receiving that response to my offer of the two options, I’d likely then offer a choice between $4000/week or $3000/week + %age of the gross.

    The simple fact that the actors WANTED the larger weekly figure + percentage certainly doesn’t mean that’s an available option. Of course, they want more: we ALL do.

    My sense is that Producer #2 was offering a bit of risk for a possibly greater reward…an opportunity for the talent to “invest” in possibility and potential. For the actors to come back with a third, un-offered option that is outside the parameters of the first two seems simply greedy and arrogant…imho…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Ken Davenport
Ken Davenport

Tony Award-Winning Broadway Producer

I'm on a mission to help 5000 shows get produced by 2025.

Featured Event
The Producer's Perspective Super Conference
Featured Training
The Road to Broadway Webinar
Featured Book
Broadway Investing 101
All Upcoming Events

november, 2019

15nov7:00 pm9:00 pmNovember Producer Pitch Night (NYC)

16nov(nov 16)9:00 am17(nov 17)2:00 pmSuper Conference

18nov8:00 pm9:00 pmPRO Office Hours

X