Sales Training Article: Maintaining Contact with Decision Makers
By John Holland, Chief Content Officer, CustomerCentric Selling® – The Sales Training Company
Through the years in selling I’ve witnessed several instances where senior executives (and their admins) have been masters of delegating salespeople to lower levels. These executives have a great deal on their plates and often are being pulled in many directions if they can’t delegate.
Within CCS® we show sellers how to use “quid pro quo” approaches to gain access to higher levels. For example, if someone that can’t buy asks for a demonstration, sellers can ask:
“You indicated that Janet would be involved in approving this initiative. If you like what you see in the demo can we schedule a meeting with her?”
This “give-get” approach is a way to navigate from lower to higher levels within an organization.
When sellers begin at decision maker levels:
- Opportunities can be more quickly qualified
- Larger transactions are likely
- Shorter buying cycles will often result
That said, many sellers get delegated but in the hand-off lose contact with decision makers. It isn’t unusual for decision makers to volunteer access to other people in their organizations. Sometimes the seller must ask. In either case, a seller is giving his/her time and expertise (resources), making it reasonable to ask for something in return.
When access is granted, sellers can say:
“I look forward to calling on others in your organization. These calls should allow me to provide an enterprise view of value for all stakeholders in this decision. What I’d like to do is keep you abreast of progress and hope ultimately to determine if I can get consensus that there is sufficient value to warrant further evaluation of our offerings. Does that sound reasonable?”
I’ve also worked with several senior executives that exhibited Attention Deficit Disorder behavior once they delegate. For that reason it makes sense to try to keep the senior executives in the loop and appraised of progress as buying cycles proceed to maximize the chances of a favorable outcomes.
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