HAVE YOU EVER asked a business executive their attitude towards suppliers in the market? If so, chances are you heard “they don’t understand my business.” Your perception may be different, but what you think doesn’t matter. Since the client signs the cheque, it’s their perception that counts. As a professional you’re under great pressure to really understand the client. In fact you’re probably competing against people who come from the industry you’re targeting – giving them the inside scoop. To succeed today, you can’t afford to be accused of not understanding your client’s business.
IT’S THE FIRST meeting with a potential client. Instead of launching into a pre-determined sales pitch you take a consultative sales approach. You use the BRACES process to guide you through the meeting. You started off well by briefly building rapport (‘BR’) to position yourself and your company. Now it’s time to move to the next stage - ascertaining (‘A’) in detail the prospective client’s situation and confirming (‘C’) your understanding.
Empathy is key to winning others over and allowing you to see things from an alternative perspective. Effective questions can go a long way in displaying empathy.