Beyond the Sale – A Consultant’s Story

For some people, closing the sale is the only thing that matters.  But for many of us, what happens after the sale is even more important in the long run.

A consultant’s success goes beyond getting paid to give advice.  If the client does not take the consultant’s advice, the client won’t get any value from it.  And if they don’t get any value, they are not likely to hire the consultant again.

Before I started learning about High Probability Selling, I always thought that I needed to work harder to convince my clients to accept my advice.  Stronger arguments, presented more enthusiastically.  But it didn’t always work, and that concerned me.

And then, as I learned more about the principles behind HPS, I asked myself, “What if I delivered my ideas with less push instead of more?  What if I presented them more objectively, more balanced, with both the negatives and the positives?  What if I didn’t try to tell my client what to do, but rather make it completely their decision?”

Ultimately, I am selling my ideas, and I need my clients to buy into them.  It’s a sale beyond the sale.  It’s not about money, because they’ve already agreed to pay me to tell them what to do.

So how do I use High Probability Selling to do this sale beyond the sale?  How do I deliver my advice?

I studied the process that Jacques Werth calls the Conditions of Satisfaction (in the book, High Probability Selling) and I adapted the principles behind it to deliver the details of consulting advice.  In place of the list of Features, I used a very complete list of choices that the client could take.  For each choice, I gave my opinions about the benefits and detriments (based only on my experience and judgment), and I also asked others to contribute their own opinions about outcomes.  I usually wrote this all down on a whiteboard or flip-chart.  And then, at the end, I asked the HPS Closing Question:  “What do you want to do?”

No matter what they choose, I win (and so do they).

 

Beyond the Sale – A Consultant’s Story

Don’t Say It – Be It

Saying you are honest is fast and easy, and you can shout it out to as many people as you want.  Being honest takes a lot longer for people to notice, but is far more believable.  The same is true for just about any other virtue we might want to advertise about ourselves.

Using words to impress can backfire.  It’s a shortcut, too often used by people in place of actually implementing the qualities that they want their words to imply.  And this can create doubt, the sort of doubt Shakespeare was talking about in the line from Hamlet, “The lady doth protest too much, methinks.”

Walking the Talk is not good enough.  Skip the talk.  Just walk.

 

Don’t Say It – Be It

Resistance to Doing the Trust and Respect Inquiry (TRI)

Resistance is a natural reaction to being pushed.  This is a core concept in High Probability Selling (HPS).

If you feel pushed into buying an idea, it’s just like sales resistance.  The more someone tries to convince you, the more the resistance builds.

That’s the problem with the Trust and Respect Inquiry (TRI).  When people sense that it’s being pushed onto them, they resist it.

So who’s doing the pushing, and why?

The authors of the book High Probability Selling felt very passionately about the TRI.  They really wanted people to benefit from this, and that desire came through in their writing.  Passion about what you are selling can make people feel pressured, and I believe that’s what happened here.

We handle this differently today.  Still passionate, but less pushing, and we offer more choices.  We teach a gradual approach to the TRI, and we don’t make it mandatory.

For more information about the TRI:
You Have to Get Personal
Establishing a Relationship – Revisited


Workshops in Dec 2018:  Chapter 12 Updated on Tue 11 Dec for $95

Resistance to Doing the Trust and Respect Inquiry (TRI)

We Are All Salespeople At Birth

by Jacques Werth

As new born infants, our survival depends on how well we can manipulate adults, usually our parents, in order to get what we need to thrive.  We are instinctively programmed to keep trying all kinds of tactics to get nourishment, comfort, and safety.  Fortunately, our parents and most other adults are programmed to respond well to this.  We then continue to learn manipulation and persuasion techniques as our lives go on.

By the time we are in our teens, we have been inundated with hundreds of different marketing, advertising, and sales tactics.  In response to those tactics, we learn how to resist the techniques that others use on us to try to make us do what they want.  This is the origin of sales resistance.

Sales experts are constantly developing new methods intended to negate our sales resistance.  However, no matter how subtle or persuasive their methods may be, most people have learned to intuitively sense it when they are being pushed or preyed upon.

Nevertheless, we have to buy stuff that we need and want.  Given a choice, we prefer to buy from a person whom we trust.  We also want to be trusted by others.  It’s not easy to become the kind of salesperson that people feel like trusting.  There is so much unlearning to do.  However, when we succeed at that we are far happier with our lives.

We Are All Salespeople At Birth