Can you keep the plates in the air?

As she explained all of the ways she was generating leads, I started counting…

Thirteen.

That’s a lot of spinning plates to keep in the air.

Then she explained that half of her business comes from referrals, and the other half is equally divided among the other twelve sources.

She’s probably the most successful “dabbler” I’ve seen. She had each of those sources producing something.

But the work required to keep a machine that complex running had stopped her growth. She was trapped on the plateau, too.

Selling Professional Services is Different

Think about this for a moment. When a salesperson sells a product there’s a division of labor…

The salesperson sells, and the product delivers the value to the customer.

Sure some really great salespeople deliver value, too, but at the core, there are two roles.

When selling professional services you’re both the salesperson AND the product. You’re “selling” yourself.

That’s a different game altogether.

But it gets worse…

You deliver value by giving advice. Sure there are probably some deliverables that go along, but fundamentally, you’re being hired for your intelligence, skill, wisdom, and experience–delivered as advice.

In other words, you’re an advisor.

And for that advice to have impact, it needs to be implemented.

Yet, unless the client trusts you, there is no implementation.

You must be a trusted advisor.

Charlie Green has a great way of describing the factors that create trust. Watch this quick video, I’ll wait…

Now, think for a moment about how you perceive a “salesperson” and the common sales tactics we’re taught.

How do they impact Charlie’s trust equation?

The way most approach sales, it’s all from a place of “How can I win this client?”

Which boosts your self-orientation (the “S” in the trust equation)…it reduces trust.

Let’s say despite that, you make the sale…you win the client.

Now you’ve got to run into the phone booth, put on your trusted advisor suit and cape and save the day for your brand-spanking-new client.

But the way you “sold” the client just took away a big pile of trust.

It makes delivering even more difficult.

And, most of the time, those sales tactics also reduce your authority and credibility.

Who knew that last sales seminar you attended could be so damaging! 😉

I’ll say it again. Selling professional services is different.

Chasing prospects around at charity events and rubber chicken dinners isn’t building up your authority or credibility.

You need a different approach…

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