There's an organization that deserves to be better known. IACCM is the International Association for Contract and Commercial Management. They are a global organization that is working to upgrade the commercial skills of lawyers and legal skills of purchasers and sales people, with some emphasis on purchasers. They believe current legal practices are actually detrimental to the demands of today's business environment for speed and flexibility and are working to change them.

I had some disagreement with some of their early positions. For example they believed purchasing contract negotiators shouldn't work for purchasing but should be a central contract and commercial group that works on both purchasing and sales contracts. I don't agree with that one. However I agree with pretty much everything else they say.

If you've taken any of my training courses or read my book (if you've read it, you've been around a while!) you know that I think the main purpose of an international purchasing contract is to get the understandings of both parties written down. The secondary (and very rarely used) purpose it to enable the intervention of a powerful third party such as a court in a dispute to enforce a settlement. Unfortunately people spend far too much time, energy and money trying to create accomplish the second purpose.

Of course, if the main purpose is to clarify understandings, the language should be simple and clear. Legal language is neither.

IACCM seems to agree with that. They go a step further and say that a contract should include how disagreements will be resolved as much as possible without outside intervention.

So, what has this to do with emojis? Here's a  blog post from Tim Cummins, IACCM's President. I won't go so far as to advocate emojis but the message is clear. Legal writing gets in the way of closing deals because it is seen as threatening.