Home > Sales Techniques > Getting set to Go!

Getting set to Go!

What questions pop up in your mind before any important business appointment?

I thought about this as a business associate and I prepared for an important visit on the morrow.

I have dealt with preparation for Sales visits earlier, but more as a process – grooming, items to be carried in the kit, fixing the appointment, calling to confirm, being on time and so on. But this time we shall delve into the content of the call itself.

We tried to get into the head of the officials who were to be met. On the card were discussions with members of the business team and with one from the Learning and Development side.

It is pretty much obvious that the business heads would like to discuss issues that impact top-line and bottom-line – Sales, cost of acquisition, coverage of market, sales productivity, range selling, profitability and so on; and the learning and development manager would obviously wish to discuss learning objectives, methodology, program content and program scheduling.

We tried to figure out, by reviewing all the data available on the company and the industry, as to what would be their pain points, where we can make the most impact and how in the least possible time we can tell them the ways in which our training can make a difference.

Remember, the higher the ranking of the official you are meeting the lower the time available to talk – if you are lucky (that’s if you managed to create the right impression) the meeting could get extended, but don’t factor this in while preparing. Keep the lowest duration in mind and ensure that within the time allotted you ask all the right questions and say the most relevant things.

But keep an additional set of questions and more useful information ready, just in case you get lucky!

It takes a bit of practice and awareness of the domain to know what makes the biggest impact with your client. It is good to get background information on the people and the business priorities of the organisation at that point in time – that will permit you to make a huge impression.

Don’t save the best questions or the juiciest details for last; there is a big possibility that you would miss the chance because something important came up and your man had to rush elsewhere – so get through the courtesies and the introductory phase as early as possible, without rushing your client, and get to the point.

Ensure that your questions are to the point, incisive and digs deep into the core of the issue; you should be seen as someone who knows their business well. That improves your chance of winning business.

Is this your drill before every major meeting with a prospect? If the answer is Yes! … you are all set to have a high-impact meeting … Go for it!

  1. Jamy
    July 5, 2012 at 4:31 pm

    You said it Jay.. I am not in Sales, however we can utilise the same preparation while dealing with a disgruntled customer too- try and get into their head and read their profile to possibly negotiate the best possible solution to their issue. Good one Jay as usual!

    • JayadevM
      July 8, 2012 at 7:33 am

      Hi Jamy,

      You are right. This technique can be used in a number is situations- you have indicated its application in Customer Service.

      Thank you for reading and for sharing that thought.

  2. July 6, 2012 at 8:44 am

    True Jayadev, the higher the position is the lesser will be the time available and their attention span.

    • JayadevM
      July 8, 2012 at 3:13 am

      I like that 2nd bit in your comment, Jayasree.

      Thank you

  3. anish rajendran
    July 11, 2012 at 7:45 pm

    well said sir.. cud share this article especially to my enterprise team for their top level management meetings..

    • JayadevM
      July 11, 2012 at 7:53 pm

      Dear Anish

      Thank you. Please feel free to share the article.


  4. Raaj
    July 12, 2012 at 4:39 am

    Hey Jayan… thanks for this refresher course in Sales Fundamentals…
    Don’t go out there without doing your homework…. else you’ll be eaten alive!
    Good work.

    • JayadevM
      July 12, 2012 at 6:42 am

      Ha! Ha!

      Yes, there is a famous book on Sales that goes by the title:

      – How to Swim with Sharks: Without being eaten alive!

      So you are spot-on!

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