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Mark Gordon

Director
Mark Gordon

Mark Gordon is a founder and partner of Vantage Partners, and is a Senior Advisor to the Harvard Negotiation Project at Harvard Law School. As an expert in negotiation and relationship management, he has worked with leading companies across a range of industries including financial services, entertainment, healthcare, information technology, manufacturing, and telecommunications. He works with clients to help develop and implement strategies for maximizing the value from both intra-organizational collaboration and relationships with alliance partners, customers and suppliers.

Mark has worked on every continent except for Antarctica (where he has yet to find a paying client), and much of his work focuses on enhancing cross-cultural communication and relationship management. Long-standing clients Mark has worked with include Applied Materials, Credit Suisse, Deloitte, IBM, Microsoft, MasterCard, PricewaterhouseCoopers, and The Walt Disney Company. His work has ranged from advising clients on significant strategic negotiations to helping clients systematize negotiation and relationship management as key business processes, structure and launch new alliances, and transform their approaches to managing key suppliers as business partners rather than simply as vendors. 

In addition to his work at Vantage Partners, Mark is a co-founder and former Chairman of Conflict Management Group, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization focused on disputes of international public concern. In 2004, CMG was merged into Mercy Corps, a worldwide humanitarian development and relief organization where Mark serves on the Board of Directors. In his more than twenty years of experience in the public sector, Mark has worked with President Ortega of Nicaragua on negotiations between the Sandinistas and Contras, President Duarte of El Salvador on negotiations between the Government and the FMLN, and the PLO negotiation support group reporting to Yasser Arafat and then to Abu Masin. In addition, he has worked with the ANC in South Africa on the constitutional negotiations led by Cyril Rhamaphosa and Roelf Meyer, taught at the NATO Defense College in Rome, and conducted training for numerous foreign ministries around the world.

Prior to founding Vantage Partners, Mark practiced law as a corporate attorney with the firm of Cravath, Swaine & Moore in New York, worked for the U. S. State Department’s Arms Control and Disarmament Agency on U.S.-Soviet strategic arms reduction negotiations, the Democratic National Committee, Senator Hubert Humphrey, and Ralph Nader, and taught at the University of Stockholm. 

Mark is the co-author of Vantage’s 2003 cross-industry study Negotiating and Managing Key Supplier Relationships. He is a frequent speaker on negotiation, alliance strategy and relationship management and has written for a variety of publications, including The Harvard Communication Update. Mark has also appeared as a negotiation expert on MSNBC, and recently wrote a book on negotiation, The Point of the Deal, co-authored with Danny Ertel, published by Harvard Business School Publishing in October 2007. The Point of the Deal has received the Outstanding Book of the Year Award from the International Institute for Conflict Prevention & Resolution. 

Mark has a J.D. from Harvard Law School and an A.B. from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University. 

Research & Publications

Untangling Complex Spend

The global annual spend on complex professional services (covering a broad variety of services, including accounting, advertising and marketing, architecture and design, clinical research, consulting, engineering, financial advisory, legal, and tax) is now in excess of $1.5trn.

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