Friday, 25 September 2009

Boring, boring, boring

Beastly sorry I haven't had time to reply to comments, but I've had no time.

Wednesday we worked from 09:00 to 18:30; yesterday we worked from 08:00 to 18:30; today we work from 08:00 to 15:00 – then I have to drive from Basildon in Essex to Hayle in Cornwall, a midge’s nudger short of 400 miles. I suspect I may not make it in one go and will have to overnight at the caravan and set off at sparrow’s fart on Saturday morning.

I’m going to bore you rigid now. Much to my amazement, I actually learned something valuable from the sales training yesterday; to view what I’m selling from a different perspective. I’m not selling radars, autopilots, VHFs and satellite communication services, but predictability in budgeting. I know it sounds trite, but that simple concept enables me to move away from box shifting (which I hate) to selling a strategic solution to a critical business issue – something I’m more experienced at selling.

This concept enables me and my salesmen to enter an organisation at a higher level than we have heretofore done, as I’m addressing a strategic issue which bedevils many capital-intensive organisations – that of the fact they find it hard to plan ahead due to capital expenditure on purchasing, repair and maintenance being unpredictable. Immediately we focus the conversation on strategic issues, we suddenly find ourselves talking to the Master of Ceremonies rather than his assistant footstool bearer.

If I can enter in to a strategic win/win partnership with a prospect organisation, then I can sell services at a fixed price and product at a mutually agreed and independently audited discount, enabling them to feel confident in putting all their purchases through me – even for products we don’t actually sell today, but on which we can nonetheless obtain trade discounts. That in turn then means they don’t have to waste time and effort obtaining competitive quotes and analysing the results while all the time their ships are being delayed by not having the necessary equipment delivered immediately.

It’s an interesting twist on our selling model and takes it to another level. Whether my staff will be happy with it is another matter. There are already mutterings of dissent within my team, but that’s merely people not liking change and being afraid of new concepts that raise the game. I’ll have to coerce them into coming aboard through example.


  1. Personally I would happily put to death the person who invented the concept of a "strategic issue". As for a strategic win/win partnership .... Bill get a hold of yourself.

  2. I understand the predictibility in budgeting concept..... but Mr Chairman, it sounds like the consultants must have been good because they got to you. May I suggest you visit the folowing website? It may help snap you out of it.

  3. Don't drive that 400 miles until you're sober again.

  4. Alan: Sorry - got a bit carried away with up-bottom-lining outside the envelope.

    Dave: Nice one - but one's never too old to learn a new trick.

    Louise: Decided to stop off at home and carry on in the morning.

    Carolina: Quite!

  5. Never looked at you in this light before, Bill. Never ever thought of you in a "working" light. Fascinating. Tried to my best to follow your drift, I really did. xxx

  6. So late that you may not even read my comment but I'm still doubled up with laughter at your consultant seminar epiphany. Go Bill!