Hey there, this is the first ever post for Claver, and I just want to take the opportunity to thank you for getting here and reading this.
I reckon the first post is really about introducing what CLAVER is all about. It is meant to sound like the word 'clever' because Claver is all about smart and better solutions to common problems. Specifically, I have decided to steer Claver to look at addressing one of the most basic need, yet problematic issue, that many people have - the need to put effective Agreements in place.
The act of agreeing to something is so primal in concept, and essential to making many things happen. Yet the experience of managing Agreements has been suboptimal for the everyday people.
Therefore, Claver will be developing practical solutions to help the everyday person and small business owners by doing exactly this: set up and manage DIY good-enough Agreements affordably, quickly, and effectively.
Why is Claver doing this?
Managing recorded Agreements looks easy but it is deceptively nuanced - it involves social and commercial considerations.
Written Agreements are supposed to help lubricate a collaboration between different parties by setting clear expectations upfront so that everybody wins. However, somewhere along the line, the focus of many Agreements have shifted towards protecting only one's own interests, often at the expense of the other party using hard to understand language, and unfair terms hidden in complex walls of text. Such is the state of abuse that most people view Agreements as obstacles.
To be fair, complex Agreements have a place in society, primarily for large corporate entities that require bespoke requirements, carefully drafted by legal professionals. However, this same approach hardly works for the common majority - not at its cost level nor for its efficacy in reaching goals for standard Agreements. Oftentimes, it backfires.
The Perils of Unnecessarily Complex Agreements
Sure - an exhaustive NDA with good-to-have (but unlikely) clauses after getting it drafted by a lawyer makes you feel good. Perversely, some people want their Agreements to be so exhaustive that you can sense they almost wish something bad would happen. However, doing this actually undermines your own interests because the needs and perception of the receiving Party is neglected.
To demonstrate, let's run a quick reverse role-play exercise:
Suppose you are asked to sign a 20-page NDA filled with lots of legal text ('legalese’). You may experience the following:
Social / Emotional: You don’t feel trusted. It’s stressful to remember all the additional terms you have to comply with, most of which are irrelevant. It signals a low-trust working relationship.
Commercial: Complying with irrelevant clauses adds unnecessary costs. If it's not costs, it's going to be liabilities added instead. Enforcing a complex contract is also going to be costlier than a simple one.
You start to think whether it is worthwhile pursuing this business opportunity when there is a lack of trust and it can potentially cost you more. You feel inclined to walk away and find a better and simpler deal.
In short, if you are making your potential Partners sign complex Agreements, you may have already been losing business opportunities without knowing it. You will be setting yourself up for many unpleasant working relationships.
What can be done?
The first thing to do - ask yourself whether additional Clauses for Scenario X are needed. Is Scenario X likely to happen? If yes, are there better ways to prevent it from happening? Surely preventive solutions are better than costly legal actions.
In most situations, simple generic agreements work best. Most situations have practical solutions to resolve and legal action is not recommended as a go-to option.
By keeping things simple, interests are more easily aligned, resulting in more productive working relationships to reach your mutual goals more effectively.
"Sounds like a lot of work..."
No doubt. Easier said than done. Evaluating what is necessary and what is not for each business deal is a lot of work. On the other hand, hiring lawyers to help you with this is simply too expensive to be viable.
Therefore, Claver wants to be there to provide a working solution to help the common person and business owners set up DIY Agreements that are simple and fit-for-purpose. Claver is developing solutions and protective measures to ensure that a bad situation is less likely to happen, rendering the need for costly legal actions unnecessary.
What can Claver help with right now?
Edit: July 2020
Claver has just gone through a proud moment, moving from an online repository of Agreement templates, to a working web service that allows digital Agreements to be handled, all inside a web application.
Template wise, it contains many of the common ones that small business owners, startup founders, and freelancers would use, such as the NDA, Sales Contract, and more.
It is now in beta phase and I hope you'll find the time to explore a little bit here
:: Link ::
Can't find the Agreement Template or Solution You Need?
Claver is currently at a startup phase. Many things are screaming for attention and it cannot be everything for everyone at this moment - I know there's going to be some missing stuff.
BUT! I'm quite committed to make Claver help you and others in similar situations, Please you can let me know the solution you are seeking. I then know how to start developing solution(s) for it. Just send an email over, or join our Telegram Channel!
-- Kevin C. from Team Claver