Reading Time: 4 minutes
So what happens once you’ve gotten past the lunch meeting and actually secured your first sales meeting? Well, if you’ve gotten the opportunity to present your product/service/company to me, try to line it up for the next time they’re at the production facility and get them to invite some of the business users who could be using your products or services. THIS IS SO IMPORTANT! Ultimately, procurement people have no decision making power whatsoever. The people that actually make the decisions are the business users that actually use what you’re trying to sell. Procurement people influence that decision, sometimes very greatly, but they do not make the final call.
Reading Time: 7 minutes
Folks, let’s be honest with each other,....PERCEPTION IS EVERYTHING! Especially in negotiation. And, raising your perceived value is critical to negotiating good deals. What do I mean by perceived value? How you value your service or product and how a buyer values your service or product may be two completely different things. You may think that your product is the best thing since sliced bread and that people would be fools not to buy it, but a buyer may perceive it as a bad product, second tier, lower grade, or worse ...not necessary. This is a key stumbling block that life insurance and financial sales folk have. Try to convince someone that something that they’ve never even thought of before is critical and worth paying for. Tough to do. Even if someone is willing to buy your product, are they willing to buy it at the price you want to sell it for? Can you raise the perceived value of what you are selling so that the buyer is willing to fork over hard earned cash to buy your product? Or, if you’re buying something, can you reduce how valuable the seller perceives their product to be so you can get it for cheaper?
Reading Time: 9 minutes
Cold calls don’t work. Not because they can’t work, but because most people have no idea how to actually cold call. The quality of cold calls that procurement people get on a daily basis are terrible. Sales people fumbling over their opening lines, talking about how golly gee wonderful their products are and ultimately plummeting into the abyss technical specifications and features that lose me in about thirty seconds. Sure, maybe once upon a time you could pick up the phone and dial Steve, the buyer down at the lumber mart and Steve would be happy to chat to you for hours without having met you before about your fancy new product. But it's likely that the salespeople of Steve’s day had less competition, less salespeople calling on him, and Steve likely didn’t have the internet, Linkedin, and Email.
Reading Time: 2 minutes
Seriously, I believe you should be actively negotiating everything. Or at least thinking about how you can actively getting more out of your daily interactions.
"Why?" you may ask.
Because you already do, so you may as well get good at it. Think about it. Your life as one negotiation after another. From the time you wake up to the time you go to sleep, you are negotiating. Roger Fischer (co-author of "Getting to Yes") starts his book by saying "Like it or not, you are a negotiator. ...Everyone negotiates something very day."
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