6 Sales Management Drills for Relationship Selling to CEOs and Top Executives
Practice is not something one does when their good. Practice is what makes one good.
1. Why is it important, for you or your sales people to get to the leaders? List at least 5 reasons why you'd like to get to top level executives in your customers' and prospects' organizations. If you realize the advantages, you'll start focusing on getting to CEOs, profit center leader, or top officials and their immediate staffs.
2. Suppose your best customer said he really likes your competition. What would you do to get his business back? That's right; you'd get to someone higher and determine what it will take to make him happy so you can keep the business.
a. List the actions you'd take to get to those higher people.
b. Now before it happens, set the dates to have those actions completed. A preemptive strike is more useful than a defensive posture. The defense may hold, but the relationship will take a serious blow.
3. For your biggest customer what are the interests and issues of each executive? How will you know how to relate, if you don't have this information? Don't assume. It's got to come from the horse's mouth. What will you do to get it?
a. Realize people, issues, etc change - sometimes slowly and sometimes quickly. How will you keep current with the top executive and his or her staff?
4. List competitors' strongholds. That is the people who the competitors are really tight with. Begin the process of positioning your company as the number 2 supplier or number one alternative. Your competitors' sales people are probably hanging with one or two contacts and doing little to enhance senior level relationships. Start working on the one's s/he has neglected.
a. Spread like a virus in those accounts. What top people do you want to meet? How will you get there? Make an action plan. Use your Golden Network to help you. When will get to whom?
5. Do you feel it's important to know what's going on in your customers' industry and client base?
a. What research can you do to keep abreast? Who can you talk with? Hint: Subscribe to "News Release" a service on the internet. It's free and will keep you abreast of what's going on with your customers' companies.
b. Meet with the senior executive's entire staff to get a 360 degree view of what's going on in the company.
c. Meet with the Sales VP to learn about their customer base and their demands.
6. Set-Up and Information Share Meeting
a. What experts can you bring to the next meeting to provide information your customers' executives will appreciate? Be sure to those top people what will be appreciated.
b. Pick a new location to meet?
c. How can you prevent it from being a one time event?
Start implementing these suggestions and you'll soon be the preferred supplier for many clients and this will eliminate all that competitive bidding and getting stuck with purchasing agents. You'll also penetrate deep into your competitors' accounts.
And now I invite you to learn more.