An Oldie but Goodie: The Service Contract Manifesto

contracts_NobMouseI ran across this great blog declaring the need for a Service Contract Manifesto.  It’s a bit old (2008) but very good.

The manifesto is a “declaration of customer-contractor interdependence.” In simple words it lays out some highly Vested conclusions: that “both sides want more,” and that both the buyer and the service provider “recognize the need for better results.” However the typical state of contracting still comes with an adversarial mindset attached much of the time because it’s “easier to contract out of habit, or ignorance.”

It begins with an echo of the Declaration of Independence’s preamble and then lists 35 “self-evident” truths. I won’t list them all, but the first four strike me as crucial:

  1. All contracts are relationships
  2. Successful relationships are based on trust. Counter intuitively, trust is earned by first giving it
  3. Contract relationships are made for the exchange of value
  4. Value is mutually beneficial – though not equal. Customers and contractors decide for themselves what’s valuable

You get the idea:

Seven years ago the manifesto was called a “vision of what might be.” Today I firmly believe we are getting there!

Image: Contracts by NobMouse via Flickr CC

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