Size matters. But so do lots of other things.
It’s all in the detail, and we all know that. So, why are so many problems only discovered after the ink has long dried?
The temptation as we approach the end game of a long and difficult negotiation is to heave a great sigh of relief and run to the pub to celebrate a job well done over a glass of our favourite tipple.
Forgotten are the issues of which currency we are being paid in, the precise size of the rebate and what factors influence its payment. Not to mention the specification of the delivery and what happens if it is late. I did the deal, what is wrong with you?
The problem is that without the detail what exactly have we agreed to?
The discovery by the French state-owned railway company SNCF that 2,000 new trains are too wide for many station platforms is embarrassing, and extremely expensive. Almost £40 million to reconfigure over 1,000 platforms. But this is far from the first time a small mis-measurement, miscalculation or misunderstanding has had serious repercussions.
Here are 3 other miscalculations with disastrous implications.
Take time to double and triple check the detail and the assumptions you have made, and build time into the discussion to agree precisely what it is that you have agreed.
As my old woodwork teacher used to say to me. Measure twice, cut once. Good advice.