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Smarter change

Legalese and contracts you can understand

When we draft terms and conditions for client assignments it’s good to take into account who will be reading them, and what their purpose is. Clear language and respect is Seth Godin on the language of agreements. Alan Weiss says once you involve legal departments in your terms and conditions you’re lost. It could take weeks or even months to get an assignment off the ground. So maybe take Seth into account, and adapt the ts and cs template you find here to create something you’ll know your clients will easily understand.

Here are some things Seth Godin suggests you may want to consider before saying “yes” yourself.

My friend Jill had a contract with a major firm who said they’d pay her for 20 days training over a year, and then when the GFC hit, they cancelled everything. Although she had prepared everything and engaged sub-contractors for design and workbooks, they refused to pay her for any of those 20 days, because they cancelled the program before it “began”. When she talked to the legal department the response was “Well, try suing us“. She didn’t. So even the legalese agreements don’t hold when they’re an elephant and our tiny consultancies are fleas.

But try anyway, right?

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