We all have those acquaintances who invariably lead us to fascinating conversations. Recently, I was catching up with one of mine. While describing what we were both up to these days, I began articulating ValueSelling in more detail, explaining why the framework has such an impact on sales teams and leaders.
It seems that the Qualified Prospect formula caught her attention and, when prompted, she replied: “I just finished a workshop focused on an equation as well.” She then went on to tell me about David Maister’s book The Trusted Advisor and his work on the Trust Equation. The Trust Equation, she explained, really helps to embody everything we are attempting to achieve by elevating the conversation, focusing on what is important to our clients and prospects and ultimately driving success for them.
The Trust Equation is represented as:
T – Trustworthiness
C – Credibility
R – Reliability
I – Intimacy
S – Self-orientation
While it seems very soft and fuzzy, Maister argues that it is useful in clarifying the economics of a relationship (both new and existing). My friend and I agreed that it was much like the QP Formula, which provides a prism through which deals can be more fully vetted for their potential to result in mutually beneficial economic relationships. When I added the work we do on Credibility Introductions, Mutual Plans and Personal Value, my friend was struck by how much these two mathematical approaches had in common. Based upon the high regard with which Mr. Maister is held, this was high praise indeed for ValueSelling and what we work to achieve.
Obviously, next time the lattes are on me!