How Can I Create a Collaborative Sales Relationship?

5 Min

Shift the balance of the sales relationship.

Be a partner to your prospect.

In a collaborative sales relationship, both the buyer and the seller have:

Equal right to ask questions:

Often, buyers are self-protective and withhold key information. But you can’t do business with them without knowing their pain points. A sales process should be a discovery: where you lead the prospect with a series of questions to find their underlying challenges.

Equal opportunity to say no:

The fact is, not every prospect will need what you sell. If your offering isn’t a fit for your client, or they don’t have the budget, end the relationship — and move on to prospects worth your time.

The same definition of success:

In the typical sales relationship, buyers and sellers compete to get what they need. In an equal, trusting partnership, the buyer and seller share a common goal: to understand the prospect’s problem and decide if the seller’s the right fit to solve it.

Let’s practice.

Tom tends to spend his calls answering his prospect’s questions and pitching his service based on his best guess of their needs. But he often wastes time pitching irrelevant features that prospects don’t want. What can he change to make his sales process more efficient?

Quiz 1 of 1

What can Tom change to make his sales process more efficient?

a
Talk more about the core values that differentiate his company.
b
Find out more about what the prospect needs before he pitches anything.
c
Ask prospects up front if they really want to buy a new service.
d
Do more industry research to get a nuanced understanding of prospects’ needs.

The correct answer is B.

Tom should ask more questions so he can diagnose the prospect’s problems sooner.

By fostering a peer-to-peer relationship with your buyer, you’ll establish trust sooner and solve their problems faster.

Lesson complete