In 1970 Mack Hanan wrote the book Consultative Selling. The book was years ahead of its time, and it’s only now that sales professionals are beginning to realize just how powerful the concept of consultative selling truly is.
Consultative selling is a sales methodology based on the premise that you cannot help a customer until you fully understand their needs, challenges and objectives. To develop this in-depth understanding, a sales professional must perform a full business diagnosis. Much like a doctor cannot prescribe medicine to a patient without first diagnosing what is wrong, a sales professional should not prescribe their solution until they have diagnosed their customers’ needs.
“Just as prescription without diagnosis is medical malpractice, selling without diagnosis is sales malpractice.”- Anon
Sales Success Depends on This Oxymoron
The oxymoron of selling is that to be good at selling, you have to stop selling.
Selling is not something that you do to another person. Selling is something that you do for another person. Selling is serving, and once you adjust your mindset to this, everything else should fall into place.
Anyone who has spent any time in a professional sales environment knows that the quickest way to build trust and credibility with clients is to provide them with value, and the single best way to create value for your clients is to help them. The most significant benefit you can offer to a client is to help them resolve a problem they have in their business.
“You don’t outsell the competition, you out-question them!” – Paul Watts
Top performing salespeople ask better questions, they develop a better understanding of the client’s needs, challenges and objectives, and they build the best solution to meet those needs, challenges and objectives.
“Always remember the ABC’s of Selling – Always Be Consultative” – Paul Watts