Tuesday, July 20, 2010

He Means What He Says!

Who means what he says? Ted Leonsis, Bob Pittman, Jerry Della Femina, and other performers extraordinaire. These gentlemen in particular are very different people, but two things they share in common are remarkable success and reputations for absolute credibility. If they say they will do something, they do it. If they say they believe something, they believe it. They always tell the truth, as they see it. Doesn't meant that they are always right, just that they will never purposely mislead.

Imagine you being able to say to a prospective client, "if you take my advice, you will be making an important investment in the growth of your company and I will be there every step of the way with you to ensure that what I've promised gets implemented and that the results will mirror what I've suggested they would." Now imagine that the great majority of people you say that to believes your every word because they have been told, or heard, that your word can be taken to the bank.

That is the professional life that Leonsis, Pittman and Della Femina are living, and deserve to be living. Yes, all three are very smart and all three work hard. So do many, many less successful people. None of these three inherited their fathers' business or wealth (not that there's anything wrong with that :). Their careers were forged by their own hard work, intelligence, daring and honesty.

Can you think of a more valuable currency than a reputation for honesty?

How, in addition to a silent vow, do you win that reputation? One sentence and one task at a time. Before you make that initial phone call in which you ask for an appointment because you "think you can help," you will have researched the prospect's business, and found a fit for the product or service you represent. In the first meeting, you demonstrate the knowledge gained through that research and how it implicitly supports the original purpose of the call, "you think you can help." It turns out that wasn't just a line, you had done some work and, right or wrong, came to believe that you had something to offer. It was an honest communication, and that will have been noticed.

As you and your new prospect together probe his strengths, weaknesses, competition, resources, options, opportunities and how your offering may minimize the weaknesses, enhance the strengths and outmaneuver his competition, you continue to express your honest interpretations of your discoveries and challenge viewpoints with which you don't agree. Always you convey the best and most honest of your thinking. It won't take very long for your new account to express, at least to himself, "where have you been all my life?"

You'll have joined the ranks of the great sellers!

Good Selling!

Love Your Work and Work Tirelessly
Serve, Don't Sell
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1 comment:

  1. Bob, believe it or not I'm reading this space...and since I'm about to start selling in earnest, I'm finding it both helpful and encouraging.

    I have not worked with Messrs. Pittman or Leonsis, but in the case of Mr. Della Femina, you neglect to mention one more important attribute that might be critical to selling: "balls"; which was the principal lesson I took away from the years I had the good fortune to be around him. Be ballsy and have a good time with it.