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2021-04-14 - 11:09 a.m.

30 min break during my workday, then back to work!

Just a vent and observation


I have worked for large businesses and small businesses, sole proprietor professional corps that needed help with contracts, many small ma and pop shops and fortune 100 on the NASDAC, and everything in between.

It absolutely astounds me that NO WHERE in the WORLD -

Oh yeah, I was in a global telecom group

worldwide contracts for telecom from a major telecom

NO WHERE IN THE WORLD are there MORE instances I have encountered of straight up LYING as a negotiation tactic than in the gov contracts space in the DC Area.

I mean WTF?

I am happy to be in a new job that seems a good fit.


In a few weeks I encountered more gaslighting and lying in negotiations than ever before.

It is so disappointing.

to have a contracts persons send docs with sneaky changes that they think will go unnoticed.

I called that out.

Not as vehemently as my old boss did. Frankly she was EPIC in the proportion of drama she brought to the meeting with a company that dared do that to us then,

And the company we worked for was quick to support the decision to just NOT PROCEED with teaming with that entity as a partner.

We just cut them off.

It was great frankly, even if some thought she was crazy over the top in her drama.
I mean the style she uses is EFFECTIVE to the extent it won't happen again with her.

I also had an epic phone call once when I got a call and they guy said he was the Project Manager- and it was hilarious in hindsight as both the internal and external PMs had names beginning with say...the letter "K" You can guess where this is going...

I get a call , lets say "Hey this is Kevin, the PM on SPACECRAFT" ( Projects always have some funky , seemingly clever name) " calling about the ___" (insert imaginative contract doc of choice--- subK, teaming agreement, whatever your imagination likes)

So I respond something like " Yes, I saw the draft. Who the hell came up with that BS? The comments were so misaligned with reality. I can't believe they are PRETENDING that we EVER agreed to that! I pulled the whole history of this negotiation and that was just ridiculous.,,,'

and I went off.. a good bit very clearly and directly calling out the BS, in some unkind language.

We went back and forth a while..the guy saying someone other than PM had agreed... blah blah.. and I said "I don't know who is claiming that as it is bullshit".
then the call ended with that PM saying he would engage in discussion and see what he could do in response to my saying something like "It is so ridiculous and insulting that someone could think we are so gullible," Then I saw an email from MY PM ( The other "K" named dude" - the internal one in response to the draft sent with nonsense BS in it's comments (Actual lies as if someone agreed to crappy terms in the past) and the internal PM said "Let's schedule a call to chat about this" and only then I realized he was NOT the person that just called me! I had been speaking to the EXTERNAL PM "K" NOT Our internal "K"... It was hilarious to me as my rant was far more effective than I could have been on my own being cool and collected in that particular negotiation. I called the bluff and they stopped the BS posturing and we got back on track with reality.)

My style is a bit different normally. I may go off INTERNALLY but am cool and polite with an external contact even when call out BS ( usually). So in the currant instance of sneaky redlines snuck in ( not in redline draft but accepted hidden changes) I just called the offending contract person and said "I ran a doc compare and saw you added_"X, y..."

and told her that NO we cannot accommodate. Contract Management Tip: Always run a doc compare before signing any final contract documents to ensure there were no changes from your most recent draft.

In addition to the opposing party to an Agreement being sneaky,
I also in the past few weeks been the victim of GASLIGHTING

Where I send an email and communication and the response comes back so misaligned with what was said ( in the text in the email thread below for all to read- so it was kinda obvious!); in a scathing accusation of me ignoring a key thing....
and claiming I said something not ever asserted.

It was so freakin weird. I was outright accused of LYING actually. I was accused of being sneaky when obviously was not.

It was so weird, but indicative of a pre-existing challenging work relationship. I am the new cat in the mix and getting kicked..


So hope that the relationship at issue is salvageable.

Not my place apparently as the BD folks want to manage it. I could go in and help smooth things over I bet if they want met to.

I WISH they would...
but staying in my lane til asked.

And my mantra is always the same

If you have a fucked up relationship at all- focus on what YOU CAN DO BETTER.

So as a company we ignored the gaslighting and I responded sticking to the ACTUAL points of negotiation and ignored all the nonsense that read like a toddler tantrum to me.


Good Lord.

Last comment:

Telecom negotiations with fortune 100 companies were EASIER.

Seriously , none of the BS game playing.

I feel like it is a freaking REGIONAL Washington DC THING

NOW I will add:

Negotiations WITH the GOVT are always GREAT

They are HONEST

ETHICAL and exacting in negotiations. I have never heard a Government contract officer or Contract Offiver Rep not be honest and truthful . They are




In this Gov Contracting space I am seeing egos and behavior I swear was not exhibited among contracting folks in the private sector, telecom. finance, anywhere else....

Its so freaking weird to me. I am very disappointed as I had to work my butt of to transition into this space.

Private sector PAYS MORE and

Truth be told is EASIER with less stress as less of that kind of BS from negotiators. I don't mind a bit if there is an intellectually tough negotiation over terms. I am HAPPY debating over legal issues ad nasueum for most. Its the kind of engagement I find fun actuall! That is the same kind of sparring I enjoyed in debate tournaments. But when folks LIE it changes the game to NOT being fun. .

It is just very disappointing to me.
Rather NONE of that kind of BS.

I mean we had to keep the sales and BD folks in check in the private sector to be sure they didn't promise more than could deliver with the actual capabilities.

That kinds of integrity check...
to be sure sales actually knew what the fuck the technology they sold really COULD and COULD NOT DO.

But overambitious sales folks who wanted to make the sale were for the most part not able to just sell BS.

That never flew. Sure there were unethical rats, but they were at least ratted out ( ok, so now that I think about it- yes there was a bit of BS )- It wasn't that different in the sense I did encounter some there that were dishonest caring more about revenue than integrity as well.. but they were at least moreso in the sales side. Sure there were moments of things to call to attention and address to remain ethical as a company- there almost ALWAYS ARE-- I didn't see that as a modus operandi of doing business in my world of work ! It was not an EVERY DAY THING to have untruths as a foundation of a business interaction. That is what concerns me.

I expect sales folks to sometimes try to push the boundaries, but not the contract drafters! I mean sometimes in large companies sales don't have a good grasp of the engineering behind a product. Sometimes they don't quite "get it" and there needed to be some ongoing training, collab with product engineering and sales to be sure no one was "misunderstanding" in the private sector.

But the thing is I don't expect on the contract side outright lies! It seems to be an actual negotiation tactic.

Maybe I should not be surprised.

Yet I am.

Just surprised and disappointed.

I feel like the best business is build on trust and integrity.

That is SO BASIC and should be so fundamental.

I am hoping these recent interactions with partners this company interfaces with are the anomaly.

I am glad the leadership seems to agree that if a company are indeed just assholes, it is not really worth doing business with them if one can help it.

OK back to work.
The crappy relationship is not mine to support as of yet. I am just drafting the contract documents but do hope that leadership figures out how to smooth that over.

I don't have nine lives basically!
Not up for being kicked again if I can help it.

If this is not a healthy space I won't stay it it for long.

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