Rating

7

Qualities

  • Applicable

Recommendation

Today’s sales methods demand an emphasis on a high-level, consultative partnering process. This approach calls for real dialogue with customers about the product or service solutions that best meet their needs. In this solid book, sales training expert Linda Richardson teaches salespeople how to stop being vexatious product promoters and become trusted colleagues instead. getAbstract recommends Richardson’s practical “dialogue selling” approach and her superior knowledge about what works. Though the suggestions she sees as brand-new may strike you as classic sales wisdom, that’s no reason not to pay attention. If you want to stop pitching and start partnering, listen up.

Summary

Stop Talking, Start Listening

Most salespeople claim to be consultative, but during sales calls, many offer a “product dump,” peppering customers with lists of features and benefits. Today, most people have a “commodity mind-set” and see many products as interchangeable, so mere descriptions of your goods seldom win. Salespeople like to think they put their customers first. But most revert to manipulative techniques – for example, “If I did X, would you buy Y?” – that buyers resent.

Don’t fall back on ineffective coercive sales techniques. Instead, adopt a consultative “dialogue selling” approach, which engages your talents and assets. Dialogue selling depends on attentive listening, learning what the customer truly wants and needs, and presenting accordingly.

Are You in Send or Receive Mode?

Dialogue selling relies on posing intelligent questions that elicit answers which help you understand your customers’ thinking, and nourish your relationships with them. A dialogue-selling mode requires developing a “customer-need mind-set,” as well as sales skills. You need six skills to succeed in sales: “presence, relating, questioning, listening, positioning” ...

About the Author

Linda Richardson founded and heads The Richardson Company, a sales training and management organization. She also wrote Winning Group Sales.


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