You probably know the scene from Monty Python’s comedy classic “Life of Brian”, in which the protagonist, which is on the run, wants to buy an artificial beard. The seller tells him that the price for the beard is 20 shekels, and as Brain is about to pay, the seller says, “Wait a minute! We’re supposed to haggle…” The funny exchange that follows has always stuck in my memory and serves as a symbol for how a sales professional never expects the customer to agree to a price. And that’s the problem
Should you heat dishes containing mushrooms? Of course not, because the mushrooms become poisonous. My grandmother knew this. My mother did too. It just happens to be wrong. This probably came from the fact that mushrooms are so perishable and some people had stomach problems eating them before refrigerators became common. The business world, too, is fraught with persistent myths.
What does the ideal proposal look like? It begins with the client's current situation and a description of the problem. This is followed by the goal, implementation and only then the financial aspect. Avoid details. First read my checklist and then draw up your own.
How can you target the part of your customer's brain that makes intuitive decisions? How do you create pleasant proposals? I encourage you to discard conventional approaches. Get rid of the charts! Stop focusing on rationality! Aim for more imagination and a desire to act!
One fact is for sure undisputed: There is no economically sense making reason for creating offers that are unacceptable. What good should that be? Well, maybe some may think that you could beat time and make unacceptable offers in order to renegotiate.My question refers to the typical offers that come to be, when the customer says „Make me an offer!“. Does that seem familiar? Or I could ask „Do you know the easiest way to get rid of an salesman?“ Right: You will say „Send me an offer…“ The salesman thinks: „Great! I can make an offer“ and actually the customer thinks: „Thank got I’m rid of that one…“
Do you like adventures? I don't mean an adventure such as Columbus might have taken, but more in the style of trips offered by travel agencies. Taking a boat up the Amazon River for instance? Or climbing Mount Kilimanjaro? Or a cave tour in Iceland? Then make your offer to your client in the form of an adventure!
Do you truly want to understand your listeners? Do you want to learn something and inspire your audience in the process? Then try giving a “anti-presentation.” This will focus on your customer's questions instead of your opinions. A guide for contemporaries who like to experiment.
Could you imagine buying your next car without taking it for a test drive? Most people would shake their head in bewilderment. It is no wonder then that for any appreciable investment, you assume that the customer needs a demonstration before she can make up her mind. But ist that really the case?
Nobody thinks they need another opinion. Nobody wants their boat rocked. And nobody wants to be lectured. And yet, companies do exactly this: They dispense opinions, try to upset conventions, and look to persuade. Break this inauspicious cycle.
Do you get it? Don't get me wrong; I have no doubts that you understand what you're reading here. My point is that “getting it” and grasping certain terminology is crucial. Why? Because terminology can give us security. But it can also lead to misunderstandings. And that's something you need to be prepared for.