Managing Sales Process

Name That Tune

In which we are encouraged to savor our clients’ answers to each of our questions rather than rushing to judgment. Just before the turn of the year, I participated in a “music circle” – 15 guitar players and singers in a circle, amusing themselves on a cold evening by playing and singing songs ranging from … Read more »

120808 Not Just One Thing

In which we are reminded, “Don’t rule any prospect or group of prospects out” on the basis of a sweeping generalization. During a recent conversation with a woman friend, she said, with a combination of distress, disgust, and disdain, “Ah, what does it matter? Men are all the same.” Read more »

It Should Be All About Them

In which we are reminded to focus on business issues rather than “products at a price” if we want to develop value-based relationships with our clients and prospects.   Unexpected voice mail from an employee we know at one of the banks we use:   “Hi, Nick, this is Susan Smith, I just wanted to … Read more »

110308 Just One Thing

In which we are reminded that focus helps us build our success faster. When I took my first full-time sales position as an independent “manufacturer’s rep” representing more than 20 different products, one of the most experienced, successful reps told me,   “Pick one product and get really good at that. Focus all of your … Read more »

101308 The $300,000 Sure Thing

In which we’re reminded to check and double check things we hear from clients during a complex sale.   I came to call it the “$300,000 Sure Thing” at a time when $300,000 was a significant sum.   During a project with a large bank, thanks to my client’s relationship with her CEO, I began … Read more »

092908 Overcoming Objectiones

In which we are reminded that “overcoming objections” is not consistent with collaborative, partnership, trustworthy selling. Read more »

080408 Making A Whole Pie

In which we discuss planning call capacity to achieve sales goals. Ever feel out of balance during your sales year? Not quite sure how it’s all going to work out? “It’s like a pie,” Tim-the-barber-shop owner said. “Pieces in a pie." Read more »

Conference-ese

“Hey, Rob! Are you receiving my Weekly Sales Thought every week?” One of six moments in my life I’d like to have back. (I’m not telling what the other five are. Don’t ask.) Sounds pretty benign EXCEPT (1) this was my opening question while meeting a prospective client in the hallway of a conference who … Read more »

When The Order Looks Too Small

8:30 pm Saturday night. With brief clatter, wine glass met table as our server, John, who only moments before had greeted us warmly at our table, expressed his irritation with our small dinner order, about half the ticket he might have expected from three adults.  We’d come in from a very full, long day, hungry, … Read more »

Pre-Meeting Jitters

Ever felt anxious  as you were  about to begin a sales conference or expo?  I don’t know anybody here? Our booth is too small? It’s not fancy enough?  Our products  aren’t fully  developed?  Message not completely clear?  Company uniforms not as sharp as the other guys’?  I’m not experienced enough? Read more »