The View from Above
Last week I flew from Dallas to Charlotte and had the pleasure of getting a middle seat in coach. Coach is where I often sit but I try and avoid a middle seat at all costs. But on this trip, I was glad I got that middle seat.
I found myself seated next to a really nice 40-year-old owner of a consulting company. And, as an owner of a consulting company myself, we hit it off right away. His business is 100% technology based, and in less than 3 years, he has grown it to well over $10 million, employing almost 100 people. Impressive.
The Process for Efficiency and Profitability
What fascinated me was his interest in picking my brain about how he could teach some of his high-level technical business leaders to bring in business. As technically-oriented professionals, their view of business development was not positive and didn’t fit their perceptions of their roles and responsibilities. However, the owner needed his sales leaders to help their current clients and prospects identify new ways the firm could help them be more efficient and more profitable.
The key to doing that is rooted in building strong “business” relationships–understanding the business, the challenges, and asking great questions to see if there are other ways to help your clients.
I don’t care what you call it, the process he asked his team to engage in is identical to what great sales people do. My conversation with him really raised my awareness about just how many people need to learn a process for getting others to buy in to ideas that can help them be more efficient and more profitable.
“Sales” isn’t a Bad Word
The trouble is that “sales” has a bad reputation. People hate to be sold, and many people hate to think of themselves as salespeople or in a business development role because they see it as manipulative and inconsistent with who they are as human beings.
I know that feeling because I flunked miserably at my first two sales jobs. But I learned a lot from those jobs and eventually created a system to teach people (including myself) how to get people to buy in. But only if it is in their best interest. This system enabled me to go from a sales idiot to a sales savant, even though I am an introvert.
The Bottom Line
Far more people need to learn what I learned–helping customers or prospects buy if it’s in their best interest, which is done by knowing your customer’s business and asking great questions. These skills are needed by not only sales people but business owners not satisfied with their sales teams. They are needed by entrepreneurs who have great ideas but lack the skills of persuasion to convince investors to invest or potential prospects to buy.
There are so many people who could benefit from what I learned and now teach through virtual training about getting others to buy in. The list is almost endless–from business owners, to anyone in sales, to entrepreneurs learning to help customers get what they want. My virtual training also teaches them new ideas to benefit their business moving forward.
Check out jerryacuff.com to see if my virtual training might help any of your sales people or Business Development people learn how to get people to buy in. And they can feel great about doing it because they will start being proactive about helping customers succeed.