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Burnout Busters

Find out how to keep your cool when your deal gets hot.

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This story appears in the August 2002 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

In business, big deals mean big stress. The stakes are high, the players are edgy, the politics may be treacherous, and there's barely enough time to gather the info, much less digest and act on it. Although pressure is inevitable, how well you handle it is totally up to you. Here are some ways to keep from burning out at the bargaining table:

Prepare, prepare, prepare. For me, this is the most effective antidote to any form of anxiety. Do your homework before you negotiate. Spend the time to make your checklist of "gotta-haves," "like-to-haves" and "can-do-withouts." Your articulated goals are your road map. Without them, you're sure to get lost. If you're going to need help, get your team in place early. Start gathering facts and performing due diligence immediately. Get each person what he or she needs promptly. Remember, your personal network is the key to dealmaking success. If you cultivate that network before the opportunity arises, you will be able to jump on the opportunity when it does.

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