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Twenty-Eight Articles for Sales: 13 – Build Trusted Networks

Build trusted networks. Once you have settled into your territory, your next task is to build trusted networks. This is the true meaning of the phrase “hearts and minds,” which comprises two separate components. “Hearts” means persuading people their best interests are served by your success; “Minds” means convincing them that you can create more value for them than someone else might. Over time, if you successfully build networks of trust, these will grow like roots into the companies you work with, allowing you to seize the initiative.

These networks aren’t just within your prospect’s company. They include contacts on all cross-functional teams within your prospects and client, as well as the network of contacts within your own company and its suppliers. Sometimes the internal networks are more valuable than the external networks, so don’t overlook them. Use these networks to build common interests and mobilize popular support. That is your true main effort: everything else is secondary. Actions that help build trusted networks serve your cause. Actions that undermine trust or disrupt your network help your competitors.


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