When you are selling in a competitive environment it can be difficult to win business. You will have good days and bad days. You will be lucky on occasions, and not on others. Some days (or weeks!) the phone won’t ring.
The good news is that while you are not able to control your competitors or the economy, you are able to control the process you use in your business. Like great sporting teams, you apply a method of excellence to your own activities and over time you will succeed.
The process you apply has to permeate all your activities. It has to start when you meet or talk to your customer. Are you open? Do you listen? Do you try to rush them to the sale, or are you giving them the advice that is best for their needs. People are not stupid, they know when they are being given a sales line. Listen and engage with them and you both will benefit.
Thinking through your processes and defining the attributes of how you want your business to be received are the first steps along this path. You need to be able to articulate to yourself how you want to be received and then make a commitment to implement what you come up with. At RedHills we are still working on our process. Most likely this will be an ongoing process that will require fine tuning. What we have come up with so far are:
* Be open and listen
* Try to help other businesses were we can
* Always fix the root problem, not the symptom
* Don’t react
* Set the bar high
* Look to the longterm
* Look beyond the obvious solution
* Take time out to think
* What is best for the client (not our income)
* Be prepared for all meetings
While some of these may less obvious than others, we find them to be worth it. Our goal is to live them fully in what we do and how we are, not just to pay lip service to them. If we help other businesses they tend to pass leads back to us. Doing what is RIGHT for the client, even if it costs you short term, will pay in the long term. Other people aren’t stupid they know when you are taking advantage and will remember it. The reverse is true too.