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BUSINESS

Give your people the power to predict the future

P32 CANVAS DECEMBER 2019

DOWN THE ROAD APIECE

W

hat if I told you there was a simple, yet effective three-word mnemonic to help your sales professionals be more strategic, close deals faster, improve margins and increase customer satisfaction, all at the same time? If you are like most you are thinking, “I wouldn’t say anything, just tell me how.” Or you would say, “Impossible,” but read it just in case. What I am going to share is a simple memory device your sales team can hold on to, internalize, and make part of their everyday interactions with clients. These three little words provide amazing results over time because the words are rooted in the Golden Rule, one of civilization’s oldest principles. To develop your team’s empathy for customers, repeat these three words, “Third Year First.” Anytime your salesperson consciously begins your company’s relationship with a customer by imagining the third year of the relationship first— how he wants year three to look, smell, taste, feel and sound—the better your sales cycle flows and the more impressive your results.

It is not just for new salespeople and new accounts either. It is helpful for managers, your highest performing reps, and best of all, it is beneficial for your customer. Let’s explore how this simple concept applied consistently over time will help your sales team perform at its highest level. This happens by harnessing the magic power of empathy. Before we get too far, I want to define empathy with a quick comparison to its lookalike cousin, sympathy. These two terms are often mixed up in popular culture, but for this article when we think of empathy, we are going to think about a surgical doctor. Pretend we need this surgeon’s help. If our surgeon has sympathy with us, as they describe our much-needed intervention they will

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