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Ruthlessly Qualify: Key to Successful High-Value Sales

It’s been a crazy two weeks for me.


With three young adults out of the house (actually out of the country), it was time to downsize. I was not physically and emotionally ready for the move! Years of memories on material possessions slowed me down. The packing and the move were daunting.


One key thing I did was get the experts to help us with the packing and the move.


The book “Buy Back Your Time” by Dan Martell reminded me of only spending time where it matters most. We should only spend time on matters that:


  1. We excel at;

  2. We truly enjoy;

  3. Add the highest value, usually in the form of money.


The best thing I’ve ever done, or else we would have been stuck. I recommend you to read “Buy Back Your Time”, and you’ll see a different perspective on how you spend your time. Game changer on your life and business!​



It’s not about managing sales objections.

It’s about qualifying ruthlessly.

I wrapped a successful product launching project work for one of my clients (I love working with them!), and during our debrief, one of the questions from the team was how to manage sales objections.


They launched an innovative premium product in the market, one of the best in the world in its category. Which means it comes at a premium price.


Sales is about:

  • creating change

  • challenging the present

  • changing the status quo

As sales professionals you are introducing change, questioning the status quo and introducing "Big Ideas" to your clients. When you understand and sit with these 3 points, your mindset will normalise the friction some prospective clients will create for us in the sales process and you are ready for it!


Second, rather than managing or overcoming sales objections. It’s Ruthlessly Qualifying.


You need to qualify the three critical factors in a sales opportunity.

  • Opportunity

  • Resources

  • Decision Making

One of the core skills that distinguishes top-performing elite sales professionals from the rest of the pack is their ability to ruthlessly qualify leads before positioning and influencing.


Sales is not creating a demand. It's channelling the existing demand.



Lead qualification involves significant time and effort into understanding the opportunity and potential customers’ resources and decision-making processes.


In meeting a prospective client, it’s easy to get lost in the conversation and not get the correct information. In addition, you are building rapport and trust while utilising the information you have researched before the meeting.


Here are 7 Steps to Qualify an Opportunity Framework

  1. Don’t jump into pitching

  2. Listen (really listen)

  3. Dig out all the pain

  4. Find out what the client wishes to gain

  5. Prioritise what would be the number one pain and results they want to achieve

  6. Gather evidence

  7. Validate the impact

To clearly understand the opportunity, articulate to your client the problems they aim to solve or the desired results. Then, ask them if that sounds right. Additionally, laying out evidence of the problem’s existence and its opportunity cost and impact on them will create a stronger business case for them to pursue.


Resources

Resources are not only about pricing. It’s your prospect’s investment in People, Time and Money.


Especially in complex deals, you need commitment from your clients to allocate people. When your prospect does not have people on board; that’s a warning signal.


When are they planning to launch the project?


Establishing a timeline can provide compelling reasons for your clients. If the launch is more than three years away, it may not be a priority to focus on. This is a warning that the opportunity might not happen, too.


When you qualify ruthlessly, you will hardly have to manage or overcome objections because you have prepared yourself in a position to present or have already qualified that it was not a client or product fit.


Most of the time, salespeople rush to send a proposal or quote without sufficient or the correct information.


Can you provide pricing even if it’s unlikely to win?


It is perfectly fine to submit a quote or estimate tailored to fit within a certain budget. However, it is important to remember that submitting a quote does not necessarily mean the opportunity should not be considered a forecast to your pipeline. Instead, viewing it as a potential deal that must be cultivated and nurtured over the next 6-12 months may be more appropriate.


Decision Making

What’s worse than losing a deal?


It’s prospective clients not able to make a decision.


You know those clients that just suddenly ghosted you?


Sometimes, reasons can be personal, or there is a considerable management shakeup.


But most of the time, companies stall.


Imagine you have worked hard and diligently on your proposal to present to the wrong people and we have to guess about critical criteria and concerns!


You need to get your brilliant ideas across key stakeholders, deeply understand what’s important to them and enable them to make a decision.


Understanding and influencing decisions is a critical juncture in the sales journey. To improve success in the decision-making process, salespeople need to have three fundamental abilities.

  • Articulating and influencing the decision process

  • Influence the decision process

  • Gaining access to key stakeholders and understanding their business and personal decision criteria.

TL:DR

When you ruthlessly qualify your opportunities, you are able to present a proposal to your prospect with the right information on:

  1. Opportunity

  2. Resources

  3. Decision Making

And you can present to the right people at the right time to enable a decision.

Networking Tips

In an ideal world, we want prospective clients to call and ask us for help.


The key to this is building a strong “referral network”.


Friends buy from friends or their friends friends. Nothing beats a personal network. People want to work with people they trust. One way to expand your network in your industry is to join networking events. Networking events can be nerve-wracking and tiring. But there are ways you can work around it.


My three key networking lines that always work and sure to open up warm conversations are:

  • What brought you here?

  • What are you most looking forward to in this conference?

  • What is your key takeaway in this conference?

My friend Prina Shah, a Global Coach, Consultant, Trainer and Speaker with 20+ years of experience in developing Executives, Leaders and Teams discusses networking tips in her Ways to Change the Workplace podcast. I love her take on networking, "Be interested, not interesting". Check it out below. ⬇️



​Due to family obligations, I’ll be spending a few weeks here in the South of France.



I will be working with my clients remotely and my mission is to complete the B2B Sales Maturity Assessment. The goal of the B2B Sales Maturity Assessment is to evaluate your sales teams and processes' EQ, IQ and XQ and benchmarks on proven frameworks providing actionable insights to optimise your B2B sales and drive growth.


Please let me know if you want to be the first 100 users! Click here to confirm.😊



Thanks for reading and supporting my newsletter.


I hope this week's newsletter helps you with your B2B sales opportunities! Feel free to share what you are working on and what challenges you are facing. I respond to every email.


Take care,

Ren


💰Thinking of hiring a Fractional CRO to grow your sales revenue? Reply to this email and share with me some information about yourself, your sales team, and your business. Let me know what you'd like to work on together and I'll respond with my thoughts and ideas.

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