Far too often salespeople fall into the quote and hope philosophy. They chase every deal, passing quotes out like candy on Halloween. They have either forgotten or never learned that losing fast is the next best thing to a win. The most valuable asset a sales professional has is their time. In order to maximize personal wealth and company profits spend your time wisely. That means size up a deal quickly and determine if you can win. If it is not a fit don’t try to put that square peg in a round hole. Move on. Hunt your next opportunity.
The key to sizing up a deal quickly is asking probing business questions. For example: should a prospect tell you they want to move to the cloud try asking these questions.
- Why do you want to go to the cloud?
- What business issues do you think the cloud will solve for you?
- Is moving to the cloud an attempt to avoid a capex expenditure or do you think it is a better technology for what you need to do?
- Are you open to alternatives or are you planning on defaulting to AWS?
Notice that none of these questions are yes/no answers. They are designed to get the prospect talking. Keep asking these types of questions until you are confident you have a solution for them or that it is best for you to move on. I highly suggest having this conversation without your sales engineer in the room. That way you can avoid going technical fast. Keep it at a business level.
Next time I will talk about part two of “losing fast & sizing up the deal” and how important the BANT is in making a go no go decision.