There we go, the start of a new year, 365 days. Traditionally in the first month or two, we make promises. We chase them in the following nine months and keep the last month for reflection and preparation for the following year. Let’s focus on January and February: What is in your mind that you want to achieve this year? What would you like to do better? What should you stop doing, and what are the things you finally need to start? To help you answer these questions (which is a GREAT exercise!) I suggest to read the following blogs for inspiration:
- Resolutions to Keep (2022)
- New Year Resolutions for Sales Executives (2021)
- New Year Resolutions for Sales Managers (2021)
When setting resolutions to improve the new way of selling, “just” implement your answers 🙂. But I think that’s the whole point; we have been trained for years and years to sell in a certain way, and to undo habits and start new ones is not easy. You wish there was a faster solution, a magic trick. But, I am sorry, there isn’t.
But if you could have one superpower to help you with getting better at the new way of selling? What would you choose?
I know what I would wish for: Reading the customer’s mind! Exactly, that would help you a lot. Wouldn’t it be great if you could, at any time during the customer conversation, know what they are thinking of? That would be great, right? Then, you could make better decisions on what questions you would ask, what insights you would share, or what story you would tell.
Imagine you are having a conversation with a prospect who hasn’t shown genuine interest in the first five minutes. Then, with your superpower, you can hear the customer thinking:
- I took this call because I wondered what the salesperson would have to say.
- I haven’t heard anything interesting so far; I am good with where I am, and I shouldn’t change suppliers.
- This salesperson is just trying to sell me something I don’t want. I have other more important things to do. Maybe I should test the market and ask for a better price.
Tada…! Now you know the prospect is not asking you to put a proposal on the table. Instead, the prospect thinks of the fastest way to end the conversation; they have other, more important things to do.
Maybe you could ask what that important thing is. What is their senior management busy with? What topics are on the boardroom meeting agenda? Why is the prospect talking to your anyway? What is your contact tasked with?
Once you understand that better, you can contribute to the conversation and add value:
- Be the instigator of change. Share information that may change the prospect’s perspective on their challenges.
- Do you think they are missing out on growth opportunities?
- Related to what your prospect wants to achieve, what risks of not changing do you see?
- Do you know how to save costs your prospect may never have considered before?
- Help your prospect make sense of the overwhelming amount of information.
– what is important and what not?
– what is essential to act on?
– what strategic initiative would pay off?
In this process, do you realize you have not been talking about your company and what you sell? The longer your can hold to not talking about your products and solutions, the better. That’s the new way of selling and what Trusted Advisors do.
BTW, I think you already have this superpower of reading the customer’s mind – just use it!.
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