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The Day The Job Fairy Died

It was nearly 40 years ago, but I can still remember it clearly. I’d just started my first “real” job, and had been at it about three months. Every day, someone had given me billable project work [...]

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You Will Never Listen Yourself Out of Business.

This insight is one of the better understood principles relating to the difference between traditional sales and Business Development. Simply put, if your objective is to develop business with [...]

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Don’t Get Mad At People For Doing What You Never Told Them Not to Do.

As professionals in Business Development we have to take responsibility for the nature of our relationship with our customer. Prevent issues from becoming negative issues by negotiating and [...]

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If Your Question Is Longer Than Two Lines, You Probably Aren’t Asking the Best Question.

Stop and take a moment to think about the kinds of questions you ask your prospects. Is your tendency to ask long, overly-focused questions or short, open-ended questions? As a Business [...]

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Just Because You Have It … Doesn’t Mean They Need It!

Salespeople often rely too heavily on their company’s products, services and accompanying solutions. They believe just because they have something to offer, someone must need it. Since [...]

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No Problem … No Need … No Prospect!

In Business Development, most of us think you have to establish a prospect’s need for your product or service. But there’s a significant hurdle that must be tackled first: the real [...]

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Your Prospect Needs to Be Working As Hard to Buy As You Are to Sell.

One of the basic rules of psychology states, "If you are working harder to help someone than they are working to help themselves, you are in fact the problem."

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Why People Don’t Buy: No Pain, No Match, No Crisis, No Trust.

If we do not understand how and why people buy or have a process to disqualify opportunities early, we tend to rationalize a reason why the person did not buy from us. On a fundamental basis, [...]

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The Burden of Proof Is on the Prospect.

Traditional sales people labor under an unfair burden and disadvantage. Psychologically, they believe that when approaching a potential customer, they have to prove the value of their product or [...]

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No One Will Ever Get Mad at You for Doing Something They Gave You Permission to Do.

We present this insight in Wining Conversations: Mastering the Art of Business Development and are always surprised by the number of individuals that remark, “Why didn’t I think of that [...]

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Your Prospects Don’t Care About You … But They Love to Talk About Themselves.

Prospects and individuals in general are self-centered and really only care about themselves. Given the opportunity, they are happy to discuss every detail of their world, situation and [...]

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The Problem the Prospect Brings You Is Never the Real Problem.

Business Development Professionals learn that people ultimately buy to avoid or overcome what they perceive to be a problem, dissatisfaction or disappointment. People buy to avoid a negative, not [...]

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If You Sense It or Feel It, Say It Tactfully.

During a conversation with a prospect, if you sense something is incorrect or feel you are being misled or denied information … trust your feelings. First, identify and understand what triggered [...]

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The Problem a Prospect Brings You Is Almost Never a Technical Problem.

By nature, technical professionals are driven to solve problems. So, it’s not surprising that many Business Development Professionals focus their efforts on uncovering technical problems. [...]

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Work on the Right Side of the Problem.

Often, when we encounter problems in the role of Business Development, it’s because we’re working on the symptoms of the problem, rather than the real problem. Getting to the root, or [...]

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In Business Development, Stay Professionally Involved But Emotionally Detached.

Along with your purpose in Business Development, your ability to stay emotionally detached in interactions with prospects and clients is a critical component to your success. Emotion impacts both [...]

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There Are No Customers Who Do Not Buy, but Simply Prospects Who Fail to Qualify.

Many people in sales and Business Development believe the reason a prospect didn’t buy is that they lacked sufficient information, enough justification or adequate incentives convincing [...]

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Don’t Look Too Good or Talk Too Wise.

In his poem “If”, Rudyard Kipling shares examples on how to relate to others and exhibit grace, class and humility. People are comfortable with and instinctively trust those individuals who they [...]

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The 3 Cs (Credibility, Confidence and Courage) = Success in Business Development

Credibility, confidence and courage are three interwoven factors essential for Business Development success. These key elements make us powerful, efficient and effective in the role. Any one of [...]

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Only Decision Makers Can Discuss Money.

This insight has implications for both the Business Development Professional as well as the prospect. If you are not a decision maker you will have a hard time bringing up and discussing money. [...]