Observing, listening, evaluating, watching to see what you will do and how you will handle it. Maybe not on a conscious level but subconscious level for sure. They are all watching to see how you will handle the opportunity you have been given.

You have done your research, refined your messaging, sought out the right people and made the call. You are now sitting in the room with the potential client buyer. You have an opportunity to lay the groundwork for a a long term value driven relationship or reinforce the sad stereotype that all salespeople are looking out only for themselves. It’s up to you, but never doubt that the client buyer is evaluating you.

They are evaluating whether you are truthful, interested in solving their problem, can be trusted with sensitive information and whether they should let their guard down. They are evaluating whether they want to work with you over the long haul and how you fit into their way of doing things.

Would you go on a first date looking like a slob, no deodorant, dirty clothes and having not brushed your teeth for three days? Outside of the fact that its just plain nasty, you wouldn’t make the best first impression on the date would you?

Keeping the right perspective.

Think about it, when a customer agrees to meet with you it is an olive branch of trust. They are willing to take time out of their busy schedules and spend it with you. The hope of course in the buyers mind is you are not wasting their time and they can find a solution to the problem they have been dealing with.

The sad truth is many times the salesperson is simply looking out for themselves. They have spent the time prior to the meting thinking about all of the objections they will receive a creative ways to overcome them. They have a meeting strategy that unfortunately sometimes involves leverage, fear, uncertainty and doubt. These strategies are void of the main ingredients for a successful relationship…..Trust and Value

Successful and smart salespeople clearly understand what is at stake. It is not just the meeting, its your reputation, the companies reputation and the difference between success or failure. Successful and smart salespeople are always looking to increase the amount of value they can deliver because they inherently know that an extremely satisfied customer tells others.

The upside

If the only value you can muster is a cheaper price then be prepared to make less and struggle over time. The race to the bottom is a quicker path to failure. There will always be someone cheaper than you, willing to do more for less just to get the business. Not to mention the stink it creates because of the desperation you are displaying.

The upside of bringing your A game to every customer interaction is value goes up, and with value comes higher margins, shortened sales cycle, stronger reputation and critical mass.

Realize that all customers are not for you, your work is not for everyone and seeking to constantly increase the value delivery draws the right people to you.