It’s very easy to make a contract: one can be made through a conversation, over an email chain, or even by the mere actions of the parties. Such contracts are just as binding as a formal written agreement – but a lot less clear. They often miss out important terms and fail to adequately allocate risks, responsibilities, and rewards between the parties, leading to unwelcome surprises or disputes.
Handshakes won’t take care of these details and failure to do so can put your revenue, margins, and profits at risk. Without your customers and your cash you are nothing, so take the trouble to put it all in writing to give yourself some protection.
Good contracts accurately reflect the deal struck between the parties and adequately allocate the risk of things going wrong between them – here’s how to ensure you can act as an informed buyer or supplier and avoid any unexpected surprises.