Selling isn’t for everyone, but loathe it or like it, sales are the lifeblood of any business. If you aren’t making sales, the business won’t grow, let alone function.
For some companies, like MoJo People, sales are not just necessary, it’s in our DNA. It’s what we live and breathe, every second of everyday, and not just for ourselves, for our customers too!
As such a large portion of our business is focused on sales and selling, we regularly have conversations with our customers about our own values, and the values of our team – especially if we are selling on someone’s behalf. Honesty and integrity come high on our list of priorities. We believe these attributes are critical to not just sales success, but general business success, especially in these tough economic times.
Here are some of MoJo’s thoughts on the subject of honesty and integrity and how they impact your business life.
Discuss prices honestly: When it comes to pricing, don’t be shy about discussing it with existing and new customers. Be honest. Don’t be forced to drop your prices without genuine discussion. Buyers normally want to buy from suppliers who will be around to see the job through and to service the account into the future. There is nothing to be gained across the region by screwing our suppliers. We all need to tighten belts and negotiate with suppliers, but as a supplier you too need to be strong and honest about where you can and can’t compromise – seek fairness above all, don’t be afraid to negotiate. We are believers in visible pricing – explain your pricing strategy. If your customer feels he/ she is being ripped off, why do they feel this, what are they comparing you to? Maybe they don’t understand the full value and benefit of what you do across their business, maybe they don’t actually need or use all of your product or service and so you may need to educate or strip back some of your offering. Seek honest face-to- face discussion where possible; avoid putting price increases in writing.
Network with Integrity: There is a difference between those that network well i.e. genuinely and with integrity and those that do it badly i.e. selfishly (not very interested in the other party). No-where is the principle of give and get more important. Observe the one-sided conversations with no genuine interest in what the other person does versus the open, exploratory two way conversations, which you know will bear great fruit in some form or other for years to come. It doesn’t matter if the person doesn’t appear to be an immediate “valuable lead”. Believe me your leads can come from such a wide range of sources if you seek genuine contact with people and make an impression.
Seek customer’s honest feedback: Be genuinely bothered about your customers. Spend some time talking to them and find out what you can honestly do for them in the current climate. Don’t just pay lip service to this. Really care. This can open up new opportunities, cement relationships, and expose cracks to heal before it’s too late. Don’t just seek to sell, seek to engage and build genuine relationships.
What do you genuinely do and how does this really add value? I always come back to this – know your real value. Most of you will be aware of features and benefits and will hopefully have worked out your big benefit. However the landscape is constantly changing so repeat this exercise in the light of the current climate and genuinely ask yourself how you help your customers and prospects and what that value actually is. Now communicate this powerfully and effectively and help your client understand your value in relation to your price. Know where you can genuinely add value and make a difference, and also where you cannot. Dare I say it, actually turning down work that’s not the right fit or passing it on is often the right thing to do.
And finally, you too Mr Buyer, respect and value the person selling with integrity. Ok, admittedly there are some time wasters out there and some less than honest sales people pestering you. Time is precious. But think about the genuine people you or your staff has invited in to pitch, meet with, or engage with your business at some level. Think of the time they have invested in your business. They deserve honesty and feedback – you don’t have to buy. Take the call, reply to the e-mail, tell them where you’re up to, and show some respect. No is fine or no for now but don’t insult their intelligence with fob offs or by ignoring them. Be honest, open and forthright and save everyone (including you) a lot of time and grief. Don’t play the power game – the world (particularly in the Northeast) is a small place and you will no doubt be selling something at some stage. We firmly believe you reap what you sow.
If you hold honesty and integrity in as high a regard as we do, and you would like to discuss sales and selling and how we could support your business with everything from strategy to hands-on delivery, please call MoJo People today!