You make eye contact and immediately regret it. You answer the phone, thinking you know who will be on the other end, and you’re met with a stranger’s voice. You open your email, only to have 16,456 messages in your inbox from names and brands you don’t know.
This is what people think of when they think of sales.
Sales is a one-sided relationship. Sales is a transaction. Sales focuses on immediate results.
Proof has been, and always will be, a business built on relationships. We have relationships with the community, our clients, and each other. These relationships are formed around the things we care about, and together we find a way to get things done to best advance those endeavors.
A friend recently shared great wisdom with me that confirmed I was on the right track with how to approach my new role in business development at Proof.
“Find out what a person wants to achieve and help them achieve it.”
Often, it isn’t in the formal business discussions that you truly learn about a person. What motivates them. Their “why.” It’s in those chance moments and casual conversations that opportunities are revealed.
We must put our end goal aside and truly get to know the person sitting across from us if we have any chance of building a long-term relationship. What do they care about, in and outside of work? What are their kids’ names? What do they do on the weekends for fun? Having real, genuine, no-strings-attached conversations opens up a whole new level of common ground and meaningful information that serves as the foundation of a relationship.
Good, genuine sales requires a shift in perspective that moves away from “what can this person do for me?” and toward “what can I do for them?”
The better you know someone, the better you can insert yourself and your services into their life and business goals. Sales goes wrong when we start seeing people as numbers and figures. Letting go, lowering the boundaries, and getting real gives the opportunity to build deeper relationships that, ultimately, will lead to positive and profitable business relationships.
I took the leap from project management to business development because I am excited about what we are doing at Proof. I wholeheartedly believe in the value we can and do provide our clients (something that’s absolutely essential when it comes to selling).
We don’t sell products and services. We sell our love for what we’re able to provide. A love for what we’re able to do. A passion for creativity. A drive for strategic ingenuity. Our excitement and care is our biggest distinction.
We give a damn. It’s this philosophy that has propelled our momentum for the past six years, and it’s what will continue to steer us toward our future goals.