Senior executives know that, beyond mergers and acquisitions, a company’s growth is driven one deal at a time by the way salespeople sell and negotiate. That’s why American companies spend $7.2 billion every year(1) on sales and negotiation methodologies. But beyond proprietary (and perhaps biased) consulting reports and high level-level academic papers on change, there’s little information available on whether those investing are actually achieving a return on their investment.Read More
B2B Street Fighting Blog
Over ten years ago, after having spent more than 20 years a salesperson, VP sales and sales consultant, we secured our first contract to provide negotiation training for the procurement arm of a major US airline. I felt like the proverbial fox in the hen house!
As I was executing research to get ready for the assignment, I stumbled on an article stating that this organization had just won:
A client asks us for a proposal. That’s a good thing, right? We do as they ask and provide a proposal. What’s next? We all know the first offer is likely not going to be the last. In fact, what many of us have done with that response is to give the client a price for products and services. The very natural inclination is for the customer to then begin the negotiations at this phase. We have DNA going back 1000 years saying that the buyer should never accept the first offer. We know what the conversation is going to be and where it’s headed, so how do we change that conversation and take control?Read More
After 22 years consulting on over 25,000 business negotiations in over 46 countries, we’ve heard a lot of negotiation tactics. All are attempts at commoditization and driving more concessions from the seller; some are more difficult than others.
A recent client was negotiating with their largest customer, a $60b Fortune 50 firm in the manufacturing business. Our client produces bleeding edge tools and software for manufacturing. In fact, they very often have tools that increase yield and reduce defects ahead of the market. This position gives them real power in negotiation. However, during the negotiation, their buyer, in a very angry and aggressive manner ended the negotiation proclaiming:
“If you don't give us what we want, we will fund a start-up competitor to you!”Read More
In my last post, I reported my friend and colleague, Jim Dickie (https://www.salesmastery.com) recently surveyed sales leaders who stated their top barrier to achieving their 2018 revenue objectives was lack of coaching. That article focused on how to use virtual coach technology to address that issue. For this article, we will focus on the second issue for sales leaders:Read More
My friend and colleague, Jim Dickie (https://www.salesmastery.com) recently reported sales leaders stated their top barrier to achieving their 2018 revenue objectives is:Read More
So often in selling we hear about “relationship” as the reason we win deals. I am curious about your opinion here. Would you buy an inferior solution from someone you like better than someone else? Conversely, if you find a great solution at a fair price, but don't really like the salesperson, would you buy that solution? As a "victim" of multiple back surgeries, I have had the opportunity to experience bedside manner on at least two occasions. When interviewing doctors and getting second opinions, I have always chosen the doctor I felt was most qualified, even if she was not a great communicator or someone I didn’t feel aligned with on a human level. That being said, all else being completely equal, I think we would choose the person we felt most comfortable with and would tip the scales in our way. This doesn't always happen in, say elections. Research shows that voters would choose that person they would “rather have a beer with.” Which could be another blog entirely!Read More
Sales organizations spend a great deal of time and money on negotiation skills training. Much of that investment is sub-optimal and in essence, sales teams are being trained on how to execute your company negotiation strategy. The problem is there is still a prevalent view that negotiation is a “soft skill.” When we execute training without a broader organization strategy improvement, we are, in substance, automating a broken process.
We recently consulted with a global account organization where their customers in France were bypassing their local account teams and buying from the German account teams as the prices and terms were better! This type of incoherence not only lowers margin, it creates a lack of trust.Read More
We recently conducted negotiation coaching for over $1b in revenue on over 100 renewal opportunities for a global client of ours. We weren’t training their new reps, but working with some of their most seasoned global account managers to help them be more strategic and successful. This consulting gave us the ability to confirm with a new level of conviction what we have been seeing in industries, cultures and companies for years. It is this:Read More
Think! Inc.’s very own Carrie Welles has been published in SAMA’s new book: Customer Value Co-Creation, Powering the Future Through Strategic Relationship Management.
For 16 years, Carrie has been a Partner and Vice President at Think! building strategic negotiation skills and using her coaching and training talents to improve the effectiveness of salespeople across the globe.Read More
Think! named to Inc. list of
America's fastest growing private companies
America's fastest growing private companies