Your dream client has expressed their wishes. They’ve told you what they want to do, and it decreases the odds of your winning. The challenge is that by allowing them to control the process you massively increase the odds of losing the opportunity.
You must respect your dream client and their wishes. But at the same time you also have to respect your sales process.
Respect the Process
Your sales process requires commitments.
- It requires that your prospect give you the commitment of their time.
- It likely requires a commitment to share the information that you need to help them build the right solution.
- It includes the commitments to bring other stakeholders, decision-makers, and decision influencers into the process.
- Any good process also includes gaining the commitment to resolve your prospective clients concerns as they reach the end of the buying process.
Your process marches you through the stages from target to close. And, if you want to win, you must be every bit as respectful of that process as you are your prospective client’s wishes. These two ideas will come into conflict at some point in the process.
This is where you need to be able to sell.
Start Selling Commitments
The difficult challenge in selling is gaining the commitments you need when those commitments come into conflict with what your prospective client wants from you.
It starts at the very beginning of your relationship. You ask for a commitment of time that your client doesn’t really want to give you. You sell the idea that you will create value in exchange for that time.
Later you you are challenges with gaining information and you have to sell your prospective client on providing you the information by describing for them the value in allowing you access.
You do the same thing when you gain access to additional stakeholders. You sell the reason that you need access and how both of you will benefit from that access.
Selling is creating value and commitment gaining.
And Be Respectful
Being respectful of your client’s wishes doesn’t mean allowing them to take control of the sales process. It doesn’t requires that you allow them to go through the process without creating as much value for them as you possibly can—even when it isn’t easy.
Being respectful especially doesn’t mean that you have to be so soft around conflict that you can’t address the requirements of your process that later help you to deliver what your dream client suggests they ultimately want.
Respect your dream client. Respect their wishes. But also respect your sales process. Have enough respect for both your client and your process to negotiate the differences and do what’s right for both of you.
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Filed under: Sales