There is a strong possibility that you may be working a deal with team members who haven’t been through a ValueSelling workshop. I often get this question from my students, “What can I do to make sure that everyone is aligned so that we can execute effectively?”
Regardless of what platform you are using, our end goal is to achieve a Differentiated VisionMatch. Like any team sport, someone has to establish a leadership position in a collaborative sales environment to define the objective, flow, delineation of responsibility, etc. Using ValueSelling as the fundamental platform puts you in a very good position to lead. You’re able to use your training to guide where the conversation goes and how to maximize your time. The main thing to avoid in an initial meeting is jumping down the metaphorical rabbit hole of talking specifically about one thing that your company does, or one problem that they have to fix. You may find that someone on your side of the table is anxious to jump into a problem, and that the customer may even encourage it by asking, “how would you address that?” Don’t take the bait.
The ValueSelling process allows you to better position yourself, since hearing several problems that you’re able to solve is far better than focusing on just one. If the team does an effective job of preparing, you’ll be able to establish Value in the customer’s mind by the use of probing questions to define additional problems. Remember, by surfacing unique problems or problems that we fix particularly well, we are able to uncover Differentiated Value.
The best way to prepare so that you’re able to achieve customer alignment is to make sure that everyone on the team is on the same page prior to the meeting. Clarify that you want to prepare questions, delegate roles, and make certain that everyone understands that the initial meeting is about discovery toward mutual qualification. By gathering the right information, you as the Quarterback can objectively qualify where you stand. What are our strengths – where are we weak and, most importantly, what do we need to do to fill the gaps? This process should greatly increase your odds of winning.