“We are what we repeatedly do,” Aristotle observed. “Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” Habits are predictors of human behavior.
Success is therefore determined by much more than having a great day or closing a huge deal. Failure doesn’t flow from a single bad mistake or missed opportunity. Success and failure are habits.
Sellers who consistently win display strategic habits that add a layer of organizational selling onto the always necessary personal selling. Below are five strategic ways to course-correct your team’s failing habits:
Selling is complex. Multiple stakeholders have replaced the single buyers of the past. The objectives of each stakeholder must be considered.
Imagine you’re pitching a marketing software tool to an interested marketing director, but the tool has an IT dimension. A different strategy is required for the IT buyer. Plus, the company’s client service team and CFO may also have a stake in the decision. Successful sellers are able to balance different buyers, tailoring presentations to meet a number of different objectives.
It can be tempting to talk about the exciting things your organization is doing, but focusing inward can cause you to miss the larger picture. Your customer is interested in their personal and business needs. Make sure you and your presentation are relentlessly focused on them as well.
Selling isn’t fair. The best product doesn’t always win. It does provide an advantage, but it doesn’t create certainty. “Quote and hope” is never enough. If you have a clear advantage over your competitors, take a direct approach and call it out. Without a clear advantage you need to find more meaningful ways to provide value.
If you don’t understand the buyer’s organization, you’ll likely be making the wrong presentation to the wrong person. It’s essential to identify who can and will get the most out of what you offer. You need to know whether the client may have a reason to oppose your product or service. Do your homework to determine when and how to approach a client.
Understanding your client at a deeper level is the only way you can provide unexpected value. It’s how you align your product or service with their organizational objectives. There’s no way that you can avoid research.
When researching a prospective buyer, use all the resources available to you:
Refusing to spend time on client research is a virtual guarantee of failure for a seller.
If you want to learn more about creating successful habits in your team, download our new eBook: “The Ten Worst Habits of Sales People.”