Book Cov er
Posted By
08 Dec 2023
Matthew Dixon and Brent Adamson
“If everyone’s saying they offer the “leading solution,” what’s the customer to think? We can tell you what their response will be: “Great—give me 10 percent off.”

“you teach without tailoring, you come off as irrelevant. If you tailor but don’t teach, you risk sounding like every other supplier. If you take control but offer no value, you risk being simply annoying.”

“There’s something else about this list that really jumps out. Take another look at the top five attributes listed there—the key characteristics defining a world-class sales experience: Rep offers unique and valuable perspectives on the market. Rep helps me navigate alternatives. Rep provides ongoing advice or consultation. Rep helps me avoid potential land mines. Rep educates me on new issues and outcomes. Each of these attributes speaks directly to an urgent need of the customer not to buy something, but to learn something. They’re looking to suppliers to help them identify new opportunities to cut costs, increase revenue, penetrate new markets, and mitigate risk in ways they themselves have not yet recognized. Essentially this is the customer—or 5,000 of them at least, all over the world—saying rather emphatically, “Stop wasting my time. Challenge me. Teach me something new.”

The ability to sell, whether it is a device, a large scale project or professional services, fundamentally requires an understanding of a prospective client’s needs. The ability to control or influence the conversation allows a better understanding of these needs, and allows the professional to offer insights to the client, demonstrating more clearly how clients can save or make money.  The approach is premised on the sellers ability to push back and challenge the client, leading to a deeper relationship, and an easier sale.