Do business relationships imitate personal relationships? YES! First, it starts with understanding why people ‘like” certain personal & business relationships in their lives. Here is what I look for in a relationship … Someone who:Simply put, with such a busy life, I am really only interested in driving/leading 2-3 things (business, my family responsibilities & tennis). For everything else, I am looking for someone else to “drive me” so I can fall into “Passenger Seat” knowing that someone else has got it covered. Below is a list of attributes typical in most people. After reading each topic, ask yourself: “How does this knowledge impact how I sell?” Risk-Adverse: People will often do anything &/or pay more to feel safe with their decisions. The same applies to how they feel about relationships. They are attracted to those they feel in their gut will deliver (whether that ultimately turns out to be true or not is irrelevant). People Are Disorganized: People often make too many commitments, don’t respond in a timely manner, forget things &/or don’t follow their calendar. Not because they are bad people … they are just disorganized. So, if you want to keep your sale or relationship moving, YOU need to take the reins of the relationship early by driving every step and every agenda. Leave nothing to chance. The next time you say “ok” when someone says “I will call you”, realize that you have potentially sabotaged your sale! People Don’t Like to Say “No”: Because of this attribute, people instinctively would rather avoid making a commitment to you and keep you chasing then to say “no thanks”. So, you need to be more assertive and ask for the business otherwise your sale could just keep stalling. People don’t like surprises: In both our personal and business lives, I, like you, would rather hear “any type of news” over “no news at all”. So, be sure to, proactively, keep your audience in the loop, pre & post sale, on any updates – good or bad. “No news” will cost you relationships. People value those they perceive know more than they do: People often associate that when you take control of a relationship – drive every step and every agenda – you must know more than they do on the subject matter (even if untrue). In either case, when talking with customers, have the confidence to TELL them what you recommend & why, what the next steps should be, discuss timelines, etc… If they think you know what is right for them, they will follow your lead. People want others to make their life easier: Ask yourself, for those companies or people you would refer to your colleagues & friends, are you doing so because of the product or service you received OR because of the total experience you had? But what constitutes a good “experience”?
- Takes the initiative to solve my problems
- Is thinking of me & bringing me ideas … acting one-step ahead of me
- Keeps me informed without me having to ask or chase (i.e. providing a play by play)
- keeps me organized
- Takes work off my plate (mental work)
- Manages my expectations proactively – both good news & bad news.
- Reminds me of what the next steps are & when