It is no accident that two core competencies of human resource professionals, for example, include consultation and relationship management. And this is no different for other professionals whether internal company consultants or external sales consultants. Trust is vitally important, and this is built on credibility and respect. With this new understanding, internal and external consultants can help in the decision-making process using information all parties have readily available, thanks to the Internet. They days where one side (usually the seller) had all the information is over.
If you are not selling a product but selling your service, your trust, your reputation, and your relationship management skills. A client will be looking for your ability find a problem and develop a solution. The information is out there already, and the buyer can also easily obtain information on the seller.
In today’s environment we need to understand that we are all in sales so far as we are all influencing people in one way or another. The value of our advice and is what matters now. For example, home buyers can educate themselves on neighborhoods, schools, homes, asking prices, and anything else. Today’s smart realtor knows that by being a source of information she can create value for her clients. People can do the same Internet research when they buy a car. Therefore, when the realtor, the car salesperson, or the business consultant uses the shared information, they can place themselves in the position of assistant buyer and of trusted advisor to the customer’s interests.
Knowledge is readily available to buyer. Therefore, the seller should acknowledge that fact and spend the necessary time to develop a relationship with the customer which will gain the customer’s trust.
You must spend the time and build the relationship so that you learn your customers’ needs and desires. Many in sales make a serious mistake by rushing this phase of the process. Researchers have found that the more successful salespeople are those who can uncover problems rather than listening for needs and providing solutions. Uncovering problems and issues will take time and careful listening. Continue to peel back the onion by listening to understand. Developing this skill will uncover the real issues and this will position you to provide the solution which will exceed your customer’s expectations.
The ultimate source of your credibility will be your ability to deliver, to solve problems, to take on the hassles that the customer would rather not think about nor bother with. When you do that and more you will exceed your customer’s expectations. You will also position yourself to become their trusted advisor.
Do what it takes to become a trusted advisor. Trusted advisors earn more money, they receive many more referrals and repeat business, and they establish a long-term relationship with their customers. For a similar post on our website see CONSULTANT WITH RELATIONSHIP MANAGEMENT SKILLS.
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