Over time, I’ve had the privilege of interviewing some incredibly talented sales people. No two of them have exactly the same approach. And some of the best sales people seem to run away from the herd to ride...
Part 2 - It's (Not) Personal
I wanted to expand on the most recent IMPAX Tip of the Month. In this Tip, I reflected on the importance of recognizing that, for us, our job and selling our value is very personal. However, for the person on the other side of the table, it may not be personal at all. It may be that their job is to ask for everything and anything in a negotiation.
This can be maddening for us, and our inner voice could be screaming, "Don't they understand how much better we are/how differentiated we are/how unique our cool feature is/how strong the solution and business fit between our companies is...?"
Instead of asking this question, maybe we should be asking, "Why do I even care what they think?" In many situations, it is not Procurement's job to care about these things. It's their job to get the best deal.
Our bigger challenge is to identify true line executive decision makers and develop within them a real preference for working with us. If we have a decision maker who strongly believes that a relationship with us helps them to be more effective and drive better business results, our odds of winning have gone up dramatically. Now, when we have our negotiations, we know that the decision maker is involved, even if they are not in the room.
This is the essence of our role - to build preference for our company and solutions in the eyes of true decision makers. If the decision maker cares, and we care, then even if procurement doesn't care, we're in pretty good shape. As the song says, "Two out of three ain't bad!"