When I ask, what prompted you to start your AV business? The answer I hear most often is, “I started this company because people wanted my expertise.”
They will quickly add, “I was never trained in business. I don’t think of myself as a salesperson.”
Designer, programmer, technician, visionary, or specialist – small business owners are typically everything other than a salesperson.
Yet, every business owner I have worked with is by far the best salesperson in their company.
That is why the list I am going to share with you matters. Even if you are not the owner – use this list to make better use of your boss to close deals, retain customers, and increase margins. There is no shame in scoring with an assist!
Embrace the Title
Owners need to remember that they are The Owner. You are a peer with other owners. A nod from you is recognized throughout your organization, and your clients respect it too. A thoughtful pause speaks volumes.
Be the Expert on One Thing
Just because you are the boss, you don’t need to be an expert on everything. Let others shine too. But, do be the final word on something important in your products or services. Be the person who is called upon to render a decision, design a solution, or fix a problem.
Let Others Close the Deal
You are most valuable when you are brought in to “close the deal.” Work your magic. Be the expert you are. Listen to your salesperson and nod knowingly. When the time is right, lean in to the client and say, “I think she’s right. You should take the deal.” Then turn to your salesperson and say, “You got this. Why don’t you all stop by my office when you are done?”
Leave Your Name Off the Quote
Your name doesn’t need to be on the order – it’s on the building. Stop being the salesperson. Hire someone else to “write the order” and support them. If they need you to fix a problem – do it and stop complaining. No one can fix problems like you can! Who else should they ask?
Keep Finding New Business
And give it to your sales team. Don’t berate them for not finding their own opportunities. Owners are the best business development tool there is. Take your title, expertise, and knowledge and spread it around. Introduce your contacts to your key employees. Then get out of the way.
Salesmanship for owners is not about selling. It’s about letting the sale happen. Play the part of an owner effectively and selling will be as easy as it was when the company was only you.