Every business development opportunity and interaction starts with Relationship Management, and one of the most important themes in Guess Free Selling is the requirement to put your client’s interests ahead of your personal economic interest (what Ed Wallace calls “Worthy Intent”), and both sides meeting commitments made to one another throughout. This begins with the first conversation and runs through to the last. When you focus on their interest instead of your own you are operating as a Big Time business development professional. When you don’t you are reducing yourself to a SmallTime one. Here are three simple and recent examples of Small Time:
A few years back while on a coaching call someone tried to call through three times in short order from my daughter’s area code, so I asked permission from my client to quickly check to see if there was a 911 family situation. I told the caller I was on the other line on a business call but would end the call to take hers if it was urgent. The caller said it was important and about my daughter, so I ended the call. It turned out she wanted to sell a service to my daughter but needed a blessing from The Bank of Dad.
How did I feel when she went into her sales pitch after ending a client conversation? Not very good; in fact, I was angry. Whose interest did she put first? Hers. And at that point what happened to her Trust factor? She knew I was on a business call but she had me end it for her own economic purpose. Needless to say, I did not do business with her firm.
Consider this lesser example: a piece of junk mail came with “This is Not Junk Mail” written on the front of the envelope in green ink (you probably got one, too). Not junk mail? Although I was suspicious, I opened it. Guess what? They got me that time, but never again. They’ve since sent additional pieces with the same line on the envelope which I immediately discarded.
Example three: Have you ever heard someone say, (or worse, you’ve said), “They’re a bad client/customer and things aren’t working out, but I need the money/the money’s good/they’ll eventually figure it out and fire us, etc, so I’ll stick it out until they do”? If this is you, ask yourself, are you living Big Time or Small Time? Would you want to do business with a person that behaved that way? Do you think YOUR prospects and clients feel differently?
Deception has no place in the Trust equation. It reduces you to Small Time.
One definition of Trust is the absence of fear. Your clients and prospects can’t fear you will put your interest before theirs, to sell them something they may not need or want. If they hold that belief you will never do business with them, at least not a second time if you sneak past them the first.
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