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It's Time to Grow Up; A Manual for Closing the Big Deals
on December 23, 2012
This is a book about the art of closing a large deal. The author has experience in this area. Before the age of 40 he "had headed four corporations, each of which [he] took from annual revenues of less than $15 million to more than $100 million." This book is an instruction manual for the business person that wants to grow their business exponentially.
This is for sales people, for executives, for CEO's, for entrepreneurs, and for innovators; everyone that wants to make their mark in business. That was the best takeaway for me - there are so many pieces of this process that I'll be able to use individually, outside of a specific deal, and I will be a more effective businessman as a result.
There are 18 Chapters or Lessons, that the author learned from tracking Warren Buffet, and I split those up into the steps toward winning a large deal. Those steps were:
1) Choosing your target - don't swing at everything
2) Craft a compelling solution that address the major concerns of Time, Money & Risk.
3) Speak the language of a dealmaker - don't speak like a manager to a CEO.
4) How to get an executive at a target prospect to call you back.
5) Building a team to engage your prospect effectively by predicting and addressing their concerns.
6) How to deal with the problems and people that will stand in your way.
7) How to close the sale AND secure the deal.
I was so impressed by the content of this book that I bought it for all my top customers. The first step in growing your territory is partnering with your clients to grow their business, and I'm confident this will make them stronger.
I identified one of the key takeaways from each of the chapters of the book. In order to fully understand them, it is best to read them in the context of the chapter, but these valuable nuggets are part of the treasure you'll find:
Gold Nugget 1: "Make deals with the kind of people you would like to be in business with."
Gold Nugget 2: "Developing a solution and a message that have an impact on the entire company, not just one department."
Gold Nugget 3: "Never go after the company, Always go after the deal."
Gold Nugget 4: In order for large companies to trust you, they want "safety and credibility."
Gold Nugget 5: "Big people with big problems don't buy little solutions."
Gold Nugget 6: "The big dealmakers want to hear about money, time and risk. These words are part of the language of big deals."
Gold Nugget 7: "What prospects do make deals on is what they can sell [internally] and defend later."
Gold Nugget 8: "Prospects for your next big deal expect you to have a relevant and valuable understanding of their problems so that you can discuss their general context immediately."
Gold Nugget 9: "You eliminate the fear by including on your team the people from your company who are best equipped to give in-depth answers to all the questions that are being raised."
Gold Nugget 10: "If you show any incompetence in your normal day-to-day dealings with your prospects, they will note trust you to be competent in carrying out your solution."
Gold Nugget 11: "Identify your known vulnerabilities."
Gold Nugget 12: "You must think in terms of what your prospects will value, rather than in terms of your product or service."
Gold Nugget 13: "Enrich your deal-making practice sessions further by adding one or more broken plays to the meetings you're practicing."
Gold Nugget 14: "You want to ask questions, but just like a good attorney, you have to know the answers before you ask the questions."
Gold Nugget 15: "As you receive these questions, you want to be helpful, thorough, and responsive. You also want to use this as a reconnaissance period for your own gathering of information."
Gold Nugget 16: "Your ability to make your prospect feel comfortable and unafraid about buying from you is what lands you the deal."
Gold Nugget 17: "The thoroughness of your solution in terms of how they get from here to there will determine whether they are willing to actually take the necessary steps to buy your proposal and move forward now."
Gold Nugget 18: "You now spend at least one-quarter to one-third of your time in research."