Insights

Alistair McBride | How to win your deal-by building trust
POSTED 7.6.22 M&A Masters Podcast

You might think of M&A as a zero-sum game…

But that’s where many business owners go wrong.

It might surprise you to hear that building trust with the opposing side is the key to securing your clean exit.

This episode’s guest, Alistair McBride, coaches business owners in the fine art of negotiating M&A deals. 

Alistair has seen deals succeed when business owners treat their opponents like their ally.

He calls this “the psychological edge of negotiation.”

In today’s episode, we discuss how you can use this idea to win over the other side and sell them your vision—so you can both close with maximum value.

Mentioned in this episode:

Transcript

Patrick Stroth: Hello there, I’m Patrick Stroth, trusted authority in transactional and executive liability and president of Rubicon M&A Insurance Services. Now a proud member of the Liberty Company Insurance Broker Network. Welcome to M&A Masters where I speak with the leading experts in mergers and acquisitions. And we’re all about one thing here, that’s a clean exit for owners, founders and their investors. Today I’m joined by Alistair McBride, Director of Al McBride Coaching and Development and host of Dealing with Goliath podcast. I’ve asked Al to join me here today to talk about his practice of coaching business owners in the fine art of negotiating M&A deals. And there’s a psychological edge to this. And Al is going to give us his insights. And I think that’s going to have a great lean in factor and add value to everybody. Al, thanks for joining me. Welcome to the podcast.

Alistair McBride: Patrick. Pleasure to be here. Yeah. Thanks for having me on. Looking forward to this conversation.

Patrick: Yeah, I am too. Now before we get into the psychological edge with with mergers and acquisitions and negotiations. Let’s start with you. What brought you to this point in your career?

Alistair: What brought me here? Well, that’s quite a story, I suppose. I suppose it’s easiest to start with, where I went to University. I went to university over in Scotland. I’m Irish, originally, but went to Uni in Scotland, to study both art history and psychology. And initially, I went one route, the art history route, and worked in a gallery and then went out on my own as an art consultant. And that was very interesting from a lot of sales and negotiation experience. Because the art world you’re dealing with very strong emotions, a lot of egos. So it’s not like selling almost anything else. It’s quite unique in that way. 

So it was quite an interesting learning curve from various mentors, a lot of lessons there. But what was interesting for me, I suppose, as I said, was that I when I was working in the galleries for someone else, what was interesting was, I was very much a natural, I could sell anything. I could find out why people liked the thing, I could find out what was interesting about that art were because the art, the artists did most of the work. I just facilitated a lot of the sale. So it was about finding that emotional side of what was the blocker to this person buying this piece of art, and then gently helping them dismantle that to to move forward. 

What was fascinating was when I went out on my own, and suddenly it wasn’t just for fun and for bonuses. This was suddenly the difference between do I go on holiday for two weeks, or am I going to be on the breadline for six weeks. And suddenly that extra skin in the game changed the equation dramatically. So it was what I call going from the natural to the nice but nervous and the natural negotiator is very much that person who loves the tussle, who loves the, the back and forth and they love it love the game, the challenge of it. And they very much enjoy the whole process, whereas the nice bit nervous person often has maybe too much skin in the game. 

So they’re very conscious of losing. They don’t enjoy the process so much. And they often feel they get a little bit outplayed sometimes even bullied. And so having I’ve actually experienced both sides of that equation. And that was even before I went back down the psychological side because in Ireland like the rest of the world in 2007, you know the massive recession and property colapse and whatnot. So the art world really bombed. So I had to find a new direction. So that was a great prompt for me to move that other direction back toward the first love, which was more of the psychological side. 

So I did foundational courses in psychotherapy, counseling, and then into coaching. More of that applied side, and particularly working both with corporates and with small business owners. And that I suppose, is where where things developed into some of those strands that I bring into my program that I work with, with a lot of clients today. So aspects of performing under pressure building that resilience, mixed with elements of communicating with with much greater impact. And because that’s what an awful lot of what of the negotiation is. It’s just improved communication skills in many ways. 

And then adding to that some of the later interests I had in business itself with innovation methodology. I did a little post grad in innovation and enterprise and then they invited me back to the facilitate on that course, which was our absolute joy. But it was fascinating when you bring those skill sets in with the resilience and the self mastery, what you might call managing your emotions, that you have quite a unique hybrid of different elements that come together that helped to unlock all sorts of possibilities, when we’re trying to create that trust, create that rapport, and indeed, then create that extra value for making a deal happen.

Patrick: You know, let’s take this over, because we’re not talking negotiations for asking for a raise or something, we’re looking at mergers and acquisitions. And we’re in a world where you’ve got an experienced side on the table. And I would call them the Goliath not just in size, but in experience. But buyers of companies, private equity, or strategics. They’re very experienced in doing this, they’ve done many of them. And you know, they’re the ones with as little skin in the game as possible. And then you have the owners and founders, who could be brilliant people. And by no means Goliath in their own mind. However, this is the first time they’ve gone and done a venture like this, and there’s a lot to lose here. And so you’ve got that dichotomy right there. 

There’s already, you know, a disadvantage on one side of the perception. And then the other underlying thing with mergers and acquisitions, particularly, you know, in the legal profession, as they’re looking at this, when you negotiate, we’re in an environment that is a zero sum game environment. That advantage can only be gained by at the expense of the other party. And so of your experience, you’re going to be very good at that in taking advantage at the other party’s expense. And that can you know, not only slow but derail deals. And where you’re coming in on this is, okay a little bit of an open approach. And let’s talk about that, because you’re not I win, he loses. Let’s talk about, you know, the area that you’re bringing to bear.

Alistair: Absolutely, absolutely. And you put it right there. This I’m some might still think of me as a contrarian, you know, or a little bit even naive that I was sort of more win/win, but it’s balanced up with realistic pragmatic thinking as well. I often say to my clients, win/win is the destination we’re going for, but it’s not quite the starting point. The starting point is you need to take care of your side, of your interest, of your team of your company. And from there, then we build that trust, we build it gradually. Trust is not earned in a day. So we have to protect our interests in our sides, we’re not being naive here. We’re not all teaching the world to sing and happy clappy stuff here, you know. 

So that’s not what I’m advocating. And I just wanted to make sure that that’s clear from the start. However, with good intention, and saying what we mean and meaning what we say and delivering on it, we can gradually build that trust. And it’s not just me saying this, there’s quite a lot of evidence on this from a lot of research. There’s a researcher Jensen, and who, who has a book called The Trust Factor, and in it, he elaborates on, you probably know it well. In it he elaborates that deals that have been studied that have a high trust rating, tend to create extra value in the numbers of approximately 32%. That’s a third extra value from high trust. Now, that is just not possible if it’s a zero sum game. 

A zero sum game is is thinking of it in two, black and white, or one dimensional situation of I get more money, you got less money. That’s all a and you’ve already lost it and frankly, if you’re only thinking of it in terms of money. There’s so many other elements of potentially unlocking and adding value, to an awful lot of deals that only come from being from being able to have those interactions and conversations. Where people not so much let down their guard, that’s not even the phrase, more so have enough interest and rapport in each other. They are curious enough in each other of what’s possible, that they start naturally moving. What a lot of my clients find is that they tend to say things like, I naturally feel like I’m less of an adversary with this person. We’re allies. 

And that might even be a cliche to some people ally, rather than adversary. But I remember even in the Second World War, where the US and the British were allies, there were the best of allies, but they still had ferocious disagreements on things. But there was always enough alignment in their interests and goodwill that kept them in that allies position so that they can disagree respectfully, but it was in that space of still being on roughly the same side of the table. And that is the difference. That is the positional difference. How do you feel you’re relating to that other side? Now I was talking actually to a mergers and acquisition CEO in London. They’re literally actually yesterday. And I was mentioning oh I’m going on a podcast and actually I must introduce you to him at some point. 

But I was asking you know what are what are your what are some of your thoughts? What do you think a lot of M&A experts get wrong, or that maybe are off on their thinking. And the first thing he said, I swear was he said, he said, the thing that most get wrong is they come in too aggressive. They come in all about them. And they say, here we are, we’ve done this. And we have the power to this. And these are some of the big deals that we’ve done. And it’s all me, me, me and look at us, we’re so powerful. So I have to laugh, because it did stand and Goliath roll, you know, the big, the big guy, look at me, don’t mess with me. I’m serious stuff here. 

He said, what he’s found when he’s doing an awful lot of these deals, is that there’s far more value created when they come in, they can still, as you said, both, they can still be proud of their achievements. But it’s doing it in a way that serves both parties. That actually wins over the other side. As I said, you want to win over the other side, not just tell them but sell them the vision that you’re putting forward for where these things will go afterwards. There are separate sub routes to do that. But the first is the attitude, Patrick. The first is the attitude is that mental set up in your head, that you’re not getting into a fight, you’re protecting yourself, you don’t want to be hit, so to speak, you don’t want to be taken advantage of. But you start with that. 

There was one thing that often comes across with why so many deals lose trust, is because people quickly they will all so many negotiators say they want more trust, they understand that, you know, it will lead to better things. Highly likely it’s not rocket science. But still in reality, they often fall very quickly to defensive positions, very protected. To be blunt, there’s an awful lot of people, as you know, with legal training in this area. And that’s that is an aspect of a lot of legal training is absolute protection, protection of the client protection of your interest. But in the interest of collaboration, it’s about modulating that, so that we’re ascribing positive intent, and we’re getting curious, we’re not just ascribing an action. So if someone is coming across somewhat aggressive, which is highly usual, in certain circumstances. We don’t get to have, you don’t really get to choose our negotiating partner, is that we can ride the wave of that. 

So we don’t have to take it on face value. You don’t have to take it as a personal insult, as a personal sleight. We can ascribe that positive intent. This is what I call think like a shrink, right. So how does a psychologists or therapist think? They’re fully present but in emotionally nonreactive? Now nonreactive, They’re not no, not non emotional. They’re just not reactive to the prodding of the other side. And that’s, by the way, as I again say to a lot of clients, it’s easy to spot the aggressors, right? Because they’re right there in your face. Argh, this is the way you want it done, argh. And it’s all in tone. It’s all in body language, all in the demands and whatnot. It’s far more subtle when you have those other negotiators who are all charm, and all yeah, win/win and let’s all be best friends. 

And yeah, it’s going to be great. And suddenly, you find that you they’ve managed to get a ton of your concessions, but very little in return. So as I said, that’s why I mentioned that slight element of caution, but with the same idea that we’re able to be fully present, building that rapport, understanding what the other side needs are. Opening them up with the questions, warm opening goodwill, all that sort of stuff, and being quite honest about where we’re coming from. But as I said, if there are slight, if there are things, we can take them in our stride, we’re not emotionally reactive to the project, or to the plays of the other side. 

And that’s, as I said, a lot of this performing under pressure and being able to manage our mental and emotional state. Often in these very high pressure situations. Because as you said, if it’s all a game to you then it’s easy, but if you’re if this was like setting up to potentially your family legacy on the sale for generations to come, then yeah, you’re gonna have skin in the game. It’s gonna be a lot more stress reaction, it’s being able to manage that stress reaction to keep in play. Sorry, you were gonna say, Patrick?

Patrick: No. The other thing I just think is the role of confidence that gets elevated here, because first of all, you’re not going to be confrontational, but you’re not going to capitulate either. And so you’re almost as if your, surrender is the wrong word, but you’re not fighting against what’s happened and you’re kind of moving with it and using that momentum to drive you not in their direction, necessarily, but in a higher direction. And so it comes across that way, I can imagine that it just relieves the stress of your clients tremendously.

Alistair: So it’s about turning a lot of that stress, turning it down enough that it’s going from that fight or flight level where we’re feel oh Lord, where I’m a bit out of control here down into that challenge area where you think you know what this is exciting, I can handle this, it’s challenging, but I can handle it. And that’s the challenge on we’re able to be able to get into that flow state, we’re able to act react and maneuver. And it’s also where we have much greater influence over the other side. Because the one who has more control over their emotions in a negotiation tends to have that extra ability to lead the emotions. And when you’re leading the emotions you’re leading, because the emotion is our thinking that over our emotions. 

So if you manage to nudge the other side’s emotions across, you’re able to nudge their thinking, and then indeed, their behavior. Because if you’re working with someone who’s used to being aggressive, and you turn it more into playing their game with them, rather than against them, then they can, ohthis is kind of different, this is a different experience, I think I can work with this person. Okay, that tactic didn’t work. But they’re not getting angry at me, they’re not throwing something at me. They’re not feeling insulted. Okay, I think so it almost brings that upper level in the rapport. As we said, trust takes a long time to build, but rapport, you can build very, very quickly.

Patrick: Actually, that happens a lot. That’s a great, they’re a topic of other speakers out that I really respect that talk about that, where, you know, everybody’s trying to build rapport. And what you really need to do is build trust. And and we keep hearing that come come over again. So you know, everybody’s trying to be everybody’s friend, and there’s a defensiveness there. But if you get that level of trust that goes. Now Al, do you have an example I can, in my mind, I can think of an example, but do you have a tool or a statement or some kind of, like, lack of better word tool where, when your client hears this coming from the other side, where they can, you know, redirect.

Alistair: Again, what I like to say is, there’s no hard and fast rules, it’s about empowering my client to use their skill sets their personality, to their strengths, rather than trying to fit it to what I, what I would do. So it’s about enhancing their personal characteristics, as I said, their strengths. So yeah, if there’s one way, you can play the nonresistance. The other way is to actually just get curious, you know, or the use of the pause. I mean, even just pausing and not responding and even just smiling and just looking and staying fully present.

Patrick: Where I see a lot of this coming as a benefit. And what you’re talking about are going to be in mergers and acquisitions phase is going to be where you have sellside advisors, or investment bankers that are representing sellers who are most often the ones that are definitely they are David versus the Goliath out there. You know, they have all the skin in the game, there’s always a chance for fear of the unknown and everything. And then just walking, you know, preparing somebody to be able to do this. I mean, sellers are going to have their representatives negotiating on their behalf. 

But you know, nobody negotiates and knows their business better than the owner, founder of a company that they are trying to sell. And so having this, you know, preparation in advance for this dynamic, which they’re not used to doing, there’s, they’re selling other things, which is great. But when it comes to selling their business it’s completely different. And I can just see a real need in that area. Tell me if there’s anything unique to mergers and acquisitions in what you’re doing with your coaching or what comments you have about mergers and acquisitions in general?

Alistair: Well, as I say, the first thing is that when people are used to selling or convincing of someone of a position or, you know, you might even call it ethically persuading or influencing someone. That once again, when it’s not just a game, when there’s something maybe there’s nothing bigger at stake in your professional career than this deal, then the whole dynamic changes the whole fear, and the level of risk that you’re willing to take can shift severely. And this might sound absolutely rudimentary, but I think it’s one of the most, often these fundamentals are some of the most overlooked, because everyone often does the, you know, does all the elements of what share price they’re willing or what, what aspects of ownership, they want to be left with all these different all the financial bits of how much they want, basically, but they often overlook why they want it. 

What’s the aspect that this is meant to get them because nobody wants to be you know, outsold or be taken as a fool or be seen as a fool or anything like this. Everyone wants a fair price or a great price, of course they do. But it’s also then going deeper on what it means. Deeper into the idea of, well, other than the money what else do you want? So for some people, you know, if it’s a legacy business, if it’s a family business a very different thing than if it’s a business that started five years ago, built to sell, right. But even with the built to sells, there’s also aspects of from both sides of needs of how much of the personnel do we get to keep? And how much, how’s that guaranteed? And how much that is the culture do we get to keep because how much of part of that is part of the reason that they’re buying the thing in the first place. 

So it’s the same as I say, with the family side businesses, where you’re thinking, well, there’s elements of legacy here, how are there signals of as we call in negotiation emotional payments, which are just low level acknowledgement up to admiration even. So how do they want to be, often this is some of the key things, as you probably have in your own experience, you know, where does value based, you work with a lot, I know, a lot of value based individuals, Patrick, and that’s a huge thing. And I agree with that, that’s often an acid test for me. And often people who are selling, where there’s an awful lot of staff and an awful lot of other things going with the new owner, they want certain guarantees that certain certain cultural established norms will be kept. There are certain goodwill with the seller. 

Patrick: Element of continuity. 

Alistair: Elements of continuity. But often, again, that those a little bit of those are overlooked. I mean, there’s often these deals that when the owner feels that the new buyer actually understands what they are trying to do, what they stand for and what the business represents more than just the cash value. I mean, they’ll often take a lower price to sell it to someone who fundamentally understands. They get the feeling that it’s in safe hands, it’s in good hands, different hands, but still in that legacy idea. In that emotional understanding. And often, as we say, those emotions are somewhat curbed or often even overlooked.

Patrick: Yeah, I think that happens a lot. I mentioned this over and over again, with mergers and acquisitions that a lot of the general public thinks that mergers and acquisitions is Company A, buying Company B. And that’s it. They all think it’s going to be, you know, Walmart buying some, you know, chain of chain stores or products or whatever. And it’s not. It is a group of people choosing to partner with another group of people. And the objective is one plus one equals some multiple of six, okay, they want more out of it. But at it’s core is people. And so that’s often you know, that’s the strength of these these deals, and it’s also the weak weak link in in, you know, going through and reaching a successful close. 

Now, I mentioned how advisors out there should really have their clients talking to someone like you as preparation, and so forth. Let’s talk about Al McBride Coaching and what you’re doing. Tell me about the onboarding process, because a lot of these deals don’t happen in a 30 day window. This isn’t a fire sale. These can take months to almost a year from initial concept to actually closing. So with that in mind, Al, talk about how, you know, an experience of onboarding with Al MacBride Coaching and Development is.

Alistair: Well, again, as will start with an awful lot of conversations. It’s like, what is it, just like we were saying there. What do you stand for? What are your values? I mean, with virtually all coaching clients that I work with, we start with values, because values once you establish what they are, and people think if you’ve worked in the corporate world values are something you tend to be attacked with. But in the in the more in the coaching world hopefully we use them in a in a more authentic setting. They simply say, what do you fundamentally stand for? What do you value most in life and work? And generally, you’ll find that once you clarify those, and then the hierarchy in which you live them, then we clarify the vehicles that actually deliver the wins to those values. 

Because if you’re moving from being maybe a CEO that you’ve built this company for 22 years, or whatever that is, you’re having a form of bereavement, it’s like a separation. And it’s often something again, that people overlook, they just think, oh, yeah, financials and they need to get paid well for this. Of course you do. But there’s also this other emotional, I loathe to use the word, but minor trauma. It is a bereavement, it is a separation, and you have to be able to prepare for that. What are you going to do to meet your values to meet your needs, after that separation has occurred? How are you going to all of those things that that work life that that career has given you. How are you going to replace those? I mean, you can play golf and drink cocktails on the beach for only so long. We need purpose. 

So a big part of that is defining that purpose, understanding what the business did for you in the first place on an emotional level, meeting those values and needs. And then as I said, how to replace that. But in that process, then we also discover what’s important to you that you want, as I said, to remain in that business, so that you can communicate that better to your potential selling agent that we talked about there a moment ago. So they have a better idea of the sort of companies that you want to interact with, that you’d be happy handing your business over to.

Patrick: Yeah, we’re working with a lot of investment bankers and lower middle market private equity firms, and they are not the largest, they are not the wealthiest, and they’re winning competitive bids to go after targets, because they are focusing on exactly what you’re saying. They are not doing top dollar, they are looking for that level, a little bit lower. And I think with what services you’re providing, you’re helping owners and founders come up with that answer and be able to define it for the marketplace to see where the fit is. 

I think that’s that’s invaluable. Now, Al, when we’re thinking about, you know, the current culture, now, you’re over in the EU, and we’re here in America. We’ve noticed that there’s a coarsening in society these days, and things are getting significantly more contentious. And as this contentiousness is rising, there’s also this awareness that you’re bringing, that there’s a way around this, but, you know, give us an idea of what trends do you see, as as it seems that things are getting even more contentious? You know, what’s going to be a trend with negotiations, as you see going forward? Are there going to be more opportunities for firms like yours?

Alistair: Absolutely. Yes, things are getting more contentious in one direction in the political sphere, which has huge impacts, obviously, with across the United States, and to a certain extent in, in in the EU as well. But in terms of business, there’s a greater and greater growing awareness of the importance and the value ads that what we’ve just been talking about that collaboration, as you said, it isn’t one and one plus equals two, it’s one and one equals six. And that’s what we’re going for. And understanding that when you actually are trying to bring your best self to the table. 

Again, not as a fool, but as your best version of yourself and dragging out. I mean, I often say to people down the line, it’s not usually the first thing I say to them, but and clients say to me, they say, what you do Al is you coach me on how to coach myself and the other side to a great deal. To a great arrangement, to great fit. And that I thought that was an interesting way of putting it. So it is about getting your best selves to the table, and then being able to warm up and tease out and bring even kicking and screaming sometimes at last have defense mechanisms, the best part of the other side out. Nearly sometimes in spite of themselves, but hopefully enough by they certainly by the end of the process. 

But it is exactly that, that this greater general awareness even considered from the last 10 or 15 years, that you know, might is not right. And you know, and there’s more and more research on it as well, as you know, a lot of it comes out of Harvard and various other places like Yale. But where, you know, those aggressive, hyper showing anger as the emotion or being hyper aggressive, really doesn’t work well, except in a few thins scenarios where it is very zero sum, and it is one staff and there’s nothing to do relationships, and you’re never ever going to have to deal with that person again. That’s one of the few scenarios. Other than that, every other scenario, you know, you’re going to create more, more value more of what you’re trying to achieve. 

And as I said, more and more that is becoming the accepted way of doing it. But again, a lot so many people, particularly as I say with clients in the legal profession, and to a certain extent in M&A, that they they want to have that trust, I find. Certainly the people that talk to me, maybe it’s because I say you know, I’m value lead and other and you know, win win in that authentic scenario that I attract those people, you know, so they’re already halfway on board, that they’re interested in it, but like, oh, how do I do that though? What am I actually do? Al, you know, how do I not get defensive? How do I not do my normal patterns? And this is the point that I think with the ever expansion of coaching that people are they have that bit more self awareness of their patterns anyway, and that there are other ways to be other modes of behavior other ways to turn up, because it’s the thing that I see. 

And I have free for 15, 20 years now going into different organizations. It’s the same in M&A, same and legal, you name it, that people tend to have a strategy that worked. And it works very well, until it doesn’t really have a plan B or plan C. Why doesn’t it work Al? You know, these are people who do seven, eight figure deals, and then all of a sudden a deal comes crashing down then oh, my God, what changed, they don’t know what’s different. But I can work them through a process where they understand their own behaviors, the behaviors of the other side, and how one prompts the other, and so on, so forth, then go, ahh, okay, it’s, this is what happened. So they now understand how they could get themselves unstuck. How they could change the emotional resonance, and be far more dynamic. 

And I’ve had clients, particularly lawyers oddly enough, say, they just so free, I don’t have to be this way anymore, I just thought I always have to be this way. And suddenly, they can play, they can feel, they can interact, they can, they can really, truly enjoy the process, it’s not just a fight anymore. It’s actually this collaborative process, where they’re establishing and creating something, something much bigger with all sorts of potential. Some that they see and some, you know, the unknown unknowns that are discovered, and they’re just fabulous value add. And they can take genuine pride in doing a good job, you know, for themselves, for their clients, and so on.

Patrick: Yeah, I see Al, you know, our objective with our respective firms and services out there and what we’re trying to do is we’re trying to, you know, have these transactions, or these negotiations, closed, close, successfully, cheaply and happily, okay. And a lot of people understate the happiness, but that factor is absolutely key to avoid a lot of regrets, that later can have a lot of post deal, angst. And so, this, this type of service for your, I don’t want to take put words in your mouth, but you’re looking at a better financial benefit, you know, of almost 1/3 premium over whatever you, you expense in. We would make the same case on investment bankers, whatever you pay them to get the deal closed, they’re going to get that, you know, times times three or four of value out of the transaction. 

So I think that this is great, because it not only is going to result in financial value, but it’s going to get, you know, a little less wear and tear on your soul and the process, if you can make a process happier rather than arduous. And these are big processes. And I think that’s what Al McBride Coaching Development really resonates there. One more thing Al. We’ve got an announcement that’s coming. You have a book coming out?

Alistair: I certainly do. I’m in the very near future, The Psychological Edge of Negotiation for Business Owners, is going to be released very soon. So hopefully, you’ll have a good read. Join us and tell all your friends about it, Patrick.

Patrick: Well, hopefully we’re gonna have we’ll go ahead and we’ll have a link down down in the show notes. So you want to find it on Amazon or whatever, you can find it there. So Al, again, what’s the title again?

Alistair: The title is The Psychological Edge of Negotiation by Alistair McBride. So touch on two points, you said that were very interesting. One is that you’re creating that goodwill. So when there are blips when there are little misunderstandings, when there are things that didn’t happen or things are problematic, that it doesn’t go to this assumption of oh, I knew they’d screw us over sooner or later, getting all aggressive and defensive. You go the other way, you get the benefit of the doubt. Or indeed, if you’re the other way, you give the benefit and say, oh, no, that doesn’t sound like Patrick. 

I know, Patrick, it’s probably some sort of slight misunderstanding. You get on the phone. And you sort it out. You know, and it’s more often than not, it is exactly that. And just to mention two things. One, is that you brilliantly mentioned the difference there between the implementation mindset, versus the solely the deal maker, trophy winner mindset that so many people are what would you say that they’re, they’re mis incentivized to this dealmaker trophy, I batter the other side and got this victory. Look what I fought for. 

But the deal has serious faults and how it works in practice. Again, this is a good change that I’m seeing that people are more and more in this. Yes, but how does it work in practice? How will that actually look like down the line and having far wider array of stakeholders being involved and all the rest of precisely to insulate the deal from future problems? One of the things I love Patrick about your service, I have to say is that you you make you create this safety net that allows it so much easier for that trust to develop? 

Because you, you literally, we don’t have to worry as much about that because, you know, Patrick has got us covered on that front. You know, and I have to say it’s one of those great, I think it would be a great catalyst. You need to do a study Patrick, the effect of your service, I have to say because it sets up so much more of a trusting environment, a trusting nearly culture in that meeting rooms when you’re having those discussions. Because that you have that little that, that that yeah, that buffer that safety net on both sides,

Patrick: They’re actually keeping statistics on that. So if you insure excellent M&A transaction it is eight times more likely to close successfully, than, you know, if they’re uninsured, because the two parties know that there’s somebody backing them, a party backing them with deeper pockets than than the two players combined. So it works out real well. Well, Al McBride of Al McBride Coaching and Development and the Dealing with Goliath podcast, I recommend everybody check that out. Al where can people find you?

Alistair: Well, people can find me very simply almcbride.com. That’s a l m c b r i d e.com. Or just find me on LinkedIn. You can just Google me there. I’m the full name is Alistair McBride, A l i s t a i r McBride. And you can find me there on LinkedIn. I think I’m one of the few Alistair McBride’s. Excellent stuff.

Patrick: Al, thanks so much for joining us today. 

Alistair: Thank you so much, Patrick. It’s been an absolute pleasure. Cheers.

Alistair McBride | How to win your deal-by building trust