What language are YOU speaking?
It is enviable and necessary for words to be used for communication. However, salespeople need to align with the “language of numbers”. Customers are looking for the $’s and %’s in:
Profit Return on investment (ROI) Revenue Retention Business risk Breakeven Market share Customer satisfaction
All of these items are measured by numbers. Your customers consist of owners, shareholders, employees, and stakeholders who are compensated for their success inside these numbers. Numbers are the magnifying glass that they put on every critical business decision.
So how do salespeople start speaking the language of their customers? First, they need to understand what numbers (metrics) are of the most importance to their customers. Talking about the wrong numbers is equal to using nothing but words to make your case for your products or services. Qualifying for the metrics that
determine success for their purchase of your products is critical to speaking the right language.
Second, salespeople need to start engaging the mentality and skill sets of their Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and their Risk Managers. These professionals use charts, graphs, spreadsheets and other analytical tools to assess current state against preset goal states. How many of your salespeople are using analytical tools to make their case for your products and services? You will be amazed at how many proposals, PowerPoint presentations and meetings take place where the emphasis on numbers is minimal to non-existent.
How does your company correct this language barrier?
Some simple solutions are:
Engage the services of your CFO and Risk Manager on your deal team. Incorporate a policy that every customer/prospect proposal embraces a dedicated section
where the “language of numbers” is given its proper credence. Train your selling organization with the ability to speak the “language of numbers”.
Bilingual salespeople who speak of both the numbers and the words will leap the barrier and advance more freely towards successful outcomes.
The post-recession business era dictates that your company’s selling organization differentiate with not only words but numbers.