Ziglar Newsletter September 20 2011
This week's Ziglar newsletter has an article by Zig titled Thinking Happy Thoughts.
Michael J. Nick writes about The Challenge of a Complex Sale.
Visit Michael's website at the link below.
Read, learn, practice and subscribe to the newsletter.
By Zig Ziglar
Marcus Aurelius said that “The happiness of your life depends upon the character of your thoughts.” In other words, what you think has a direct bearing on your happiness, so one way to maintain happiness is to take more control of your thoughts. Solomon said that as a man thinks in his heart, so is he (Proverbs 23:7). It’s equally true that what you put into your mind has a direct bearing on your thoughts, so you should be careful to feed your mind happy, encouraging information on a regular basis. Listen/read good, clean humor that is non-racist and non-sexist. This type of input will do wonders for your disposition and will help keep you away from your physician.
Another thing we can also do to increase our chances for happiness is to invest time in our relationships with our mate, children, associates, friends, acquaintances, etc. Generally speaking, when you make that time investment you will demonstrate that you are a loving, caring human being. It’s amazing what that will do to your own happiness state of mind.
We need to arrange our schedule to include some balance so that we have time for those people we love. By and large, since happy people are more productive people and enjoy better health, they are also easier to get along with. With that in mind, I’d say that happiness is a worthwhile objective.
One of my own favorite approaches for staying happy and healthy is to become physically active. I thoroughly enjoy a vigorous, athletic walk several times each week. I do my best thinking during my walks and my system is re-energized when my brain is flooded with dopamine, nor epinephrine and other neuro-transmitters. I also regularly indulge myself in a game of golf which gives me a tremendous amount of pleasure. Some pleasure is necessary for happiness, so take time to have a little fun. It will help to make you happy. Think about it and I’ll SEE YOU AT THE TOP!
Zig Ziglar is known as America’s motivator. He is the author of 29 books and numerous audio and video recordings. See him in action!
By Michael J. Nick
Selling complex solutions is not like selling a commodity. Your prospects have a uniqueness about them that requires you to be more detailed and thorough in your research and presentation. These prospects are typically organized in many silos. These silos are here to stay, so your strategy to sell to them must include the ability to create a business case that spans the organization. As you know, many organizations have changed their buying patterns by:
• Involving a finance person early and throughout the buying process• Performing extended research and expecting the same from you—your prospects are checking you out, too…business intelligence gathering• Putting out an RFQ (oftentimes written or influenced by your competition)• Requiring you to present a preliminary pricing and value hypothesis• Involving C-Suite personnel early and throughout the process
Our research indicates that elongated sales cycles from delayed decisions are forcing vendors to discount heavily. Lack of sales tools like Value Estimation, TCO, a quality business case, solution configuration tools, and detailed implementation plans are a major cause for these decision delays. Your prospects simply don’t have the information they need to make informed decisions. Why? Because vendors are unable, unwilling, or don’t take the time to collect the proper information to identify their issues, pains and goals and capture their current cost of status quo. Without these two pieces of information, it is impossible to understand your prospect’s “threshold for pain.” Threshold for pain is a key component to any buyer’s decision-making process.
The threshold for pain is the point at which a person makes a decision to change their norm. In other words, if you understand the problem and cost of that problem, you can project or predict the point at which you will do something about it. As a vendor, you need to understand:
• Issue, pain or goal in your prospect’s experience• Current and on-going cost of status quo• Threshold for pain—tipping point
Armed with this information you are able to predict when a prospect will buy. This is a key difference between complex sales and commodity sales. They know they have problems; what they don’t know is how much it is costing them now and in the next three to five years, and at what point they “need” to make a decision to fix the problem. (i.e., buy something—hopefully from you).
As a consultative sales professional you need to help them identify the issues, calculate the cost, project the cost over a three-to-five-year period, and discuss their threshold for pain. Once you have successfully done this, you are then able to propose a solution and implementation plan and calculate potential return. As part of your business case analysis you can compare and contrast the three-to-five-year cost as it rises to the value you are capable of delivering over the same period of time. (We suggest you build a graph to display this concept.)
Selling complex goods and services requires a lot more from you to be successful. You need to learn the language of the C-Suite, research your prospects, perform discovery, estimate value, use tools like ROI and TCO, and, of course, create a quality business case. Anything short of the basics and you will have a much more difficult time closing the sale.
Michael is the founder of ROI4Sales, Inc., and author of ROI Selling, Why Johnny Can’t Sell and his new Amazon Top 10 hit, The Key to the C-Suite. ROI4Sales helps organizations build sales tools, like ROI, TCO and Value Estimation. If you would like to talk with Michael he can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or directly at 262-338-1824.