Becoming a skilled trusted advisor is something that you must work on each and every day. One area that is often overlooked is listening. Why, People prefer talking to listening!!
When I am out at one of my Quid Pro Quo Sales Training classes I am always reminding salespeople that you were born with two ears and one mouth for a reason. Ask good, open-ended questions and let your client or prospect do the talking. Develop good listening skills.
Too many reps lose great opportunities by forgetting the very simple formula that follows:
FORMULA FOR HANDLING PEOPLE
General George C. Marshall
(Solider, Statesmen, and Noble Prize winner)
Listen to the other person’s story.
Listen to the other person’s story full story.
Listen to the other person’s story full story with your heart.
Think of it this way — every time they speak they are giving you valuable information that will help you sell to them. You learn more about them and this is how you start developing your relationship with them as a trusted advisor.
THE LISTENING LADDER
The six steps to becoming a better listener form a ladder.
L: Look at the person speaking to you.
A: Ask questions.
D: Don’t interrupt.
D: Don’t change the subject.
R: Respond verbally and nonverbally.
It’s a mistake to think you listen only with your ears. It’s much more important to listen with the mind, the eyes, the body, and the heart. Unless you truly want to understand the other person, you’ll never be able to listen. ~Mark Herndon, Writer
The operative words in that saying above are … you truly want to understand the other person. If you are sincere and understand the value of trying to help people solve issues, your selling will take on a life of it own and become second nature for you — you truly become the trusted advisor.
keywords: Bob Beck, trusted advisor, sales expert, sales training, sales trainer, solution selling, executive selling, strategic selling, lead generation, sales prospecting, sales force training, sales training program.