… and what you should do instead to bring in business…
this is a live blog post written in the sun during my holiday in France. woohoo!
You probably ask yourself “doesn’t she have anything else to do while on vacation?” and I could answer “yes”. However, there’s different reasons why I am writing a blog post instead of sitting by the pool (which I did also by the way :-))… too many reasons and not enough space and time to cover them here.
Main thing is I did lots of reading and research (with clients and prospects) and that gave me the idea to write this blog post.
Main thing is that I wanted to share my ideas and findings with you and ask for your opinion – I’m not claiming to have all the wisdom, I am not claiming I am right … I just wanted to have a discussion with you – hope you will respond…
Are you a freelance interim manager, trainer, consultant, coach… continue reading…
I am too and most of us:
- we hate sales
- we want to concentrate on what we love doing: being an interim manager, trainer, consultant, coach..
- selling is difficult, let alone selling our own services or ourselves (which is the same thing for most of us)
- our client wants to work with us because we are experts, not because we are sales reps
- wearing the “advisor” hat AND the “sales” hat is weird (to you and the client) and is not productive
- being a good coach, consultant, interim manager, trainer requires certain skills and competencies. begin a good sales person requires other skills and competencies….
So why the h*** are we still trying to sell our services ??
I think we should stop selling! There … I’ve said it.
Now I hear you thinking : “euh OK, but we are entrepreneurs and we need clients if we wish to survive. So what do we do then?”
I agree, me too I tend to think the following:
- if we don’t sell, we don’t have clients
- if we don’t have clients, we cannot do the job we love so much and we became independent for in the first place
- if we don’t do our jobs, we don’t earn money
- and without money, we are not able to support our families, not able to spend time on the really important things in life, no freedom, no success
nothing but DRAMA!
Well, I have a suggestion for you, I agree with all of the above except for the first one (if we don’t sell, we don’t have clients).
I’ve come up with a different way to gain clients and do business (after my research and reading).
Here’s my 5-step MASTER plan – no selling here, it’s a whole different ball game:
- Make the prospect come to you!
- Analyse his/her real pain/problem
- Search and envision an alternative reality where that problem is solved
- Team up with your client and find a solution to the problem together
- Earn and give commitment, both you and the client should commit
- Reaffirm and make the close
OK, I’ll dig into it a little deeper:
- Make the prospect come to you: That has everything to do with becoming an authority in your field, everything to do with building your Personal Brand. That’s the start – now you know why Personal Branding is so important to me!
- Analysing one’s pain is about asking lots of questions, listening, not judging, taking the time to get to know the person once you have the time to “sit together online/offline” – it’s not only about the financial “problem” it’s also about the “emotional pain”.
- Envisioning an alternative reality: in this phase you ask your prospect what his world looks like if you were to find the cure. It’s about hopes and dreams of the prospect. And it’s also done jointly It’s about imagining how the end result might look.
- By now your client will be eager to know how the problem can be solved and you identify a solution together. You also set expectations. Example: the client might want to lose 10 kg in 10 weeks but is he willing to spend time and energy?
- This brings us to commitment. It is important that your client and yourself are committed to getting the results envisioned. No use in promising the moon …
- And now it’s time to make the close. No selling up to now. However there is 1 aspect of selling you cannot get rid of: the actual close. Not some crazy super duper closing techniques, nope, just aks for the business. Because if you don’t, it won’t come. So JUST ASK!
How about this idea of mine?
Curious to hear your ideas – I’m ready for them 🙂