What's On My Mind
The second in a three-part series on getting to yes.
OK, let's say a client is interested in hiring you and you've gotten over the first hurdle of them asking themselves...
Do I want to do focus on this work?
(See last week's article for more on solving this issue.)
Here's the next question they're asking themselves...
Do I want to do focus on this work now?
Different question, different issue.
Prioritizing the work isn't enough.
To get a Yes, it needs to be prioritized now.
What underlying issues might cause them to defer?
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What's Worth Lingering On
OK, let's go deeper on that next-level client question in their mind–doing the work you're suggesting now.
Here are the underlying issues that might be hiding under the surface on the client side.
There are four big ones to look out for, all written from the client's perspective:
- We've got more important things going on.
Potential solution: Engage in discussing what else is happening at the client. Is there a way to reprioritize their other efforts that lets you start working with them sooner? Or to reposition your work to move it higher up the priority list?
- The budget isn't available or ROI isn't high enough compared to other priorities.
Potential solution: If budgetary related, engage in how you can partner to start small or defer certain payments. How can you help them with short-term budgetary issues? If ROI related, calculate the cost of not starting–how much per month do they miss out on by deferring?
- We can't handle the workload.
Potential solution: Engage in working through all their commitments, even beyond yours. How can you make it easier for them to get started?
- Other decision makers aren't ready for this.
Potential solution: Talk through everyone involved in making the decision. What's the win for each person?
When if comes to buying your services, things can slow down.
Use these techniques to speed them up.
OK, let's pop up a level. You know what's the most important part of this?
Be bold, engaging in these conversations as a true partner.
Always have their best interest in mind, advising on what's best for them, even if it isn't best for you.
Be helpful, offering anything you can that makes sense.
This approach always wins in the long term.
And what's crazy...
It usually wins in the short term too.
ps. Next week...the 3rd in this 3-part series!
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