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1 August - Your proposal process is more important than your proposal

Finish every conversation today with a compelling proposal about next steps

Hello Subscriber,

Yesterday, we began to use our new Proposal Checklist. We saw that the most compelling proposals might start off relatively simple. The proposal can become increasingly compelling as our understanding of the customer’s situation grows.

Today, I’m going to recommend a way of maintaining momentum in your selling conversations. The goal is to prevent your opportunities from stalling. This idea is strongly linked to something we looked at last week. We practised ending every meeting with clear agreement about “who is going to do what and by when”.

The word “proposal” doesn’t refer only to the document that we’re trying to develop for your customer to go ahead with the big investment. We also need compelling “micro-proposals” to proceed successfully to each next stage of developing your big compelling proposal.

“Micro Proposals”

For instance, a series of such micro-proposals might be needed to gain agreement to meet key stakeholders. These micro-proposals can build into a sequence of successful meetings where our big-picture proposal can be developed to become sufficiently compelling.

When you’re prospecting to secure a first meeting with a new customer, you’re not typically using a full-blown multi-page document! But your prospecting approach absolutely needs to be a compelling proposal to meet. Why should they invest their valuable time? What’s in it for them?

Your request for a first meeting might be a sufficiently compelling verbal proposal in a phone conversation. Or it might be a succinct and carefully crafted compelling proposal in an email. Whatever you choose, your approach and proposal to move to the next stage of conversation with you must be as compelling as possible!

This brings us to one specific thing you can practice today.

Here’s one area of practice to emphasise today

Finish every selling conversation today with a sufficiently compelling proposal about next steps

One of the best micro-proposals

  • “Thanks for the opportunity to meet today. If you’re happy to meet with me again, I will now go away to develop the first draft of a full proposal for you and your colleagues to consider.”

  • “In our next meeting, we can work together to see whether or not our proposals might subsequently be developed to become sufficiently compelling.”

  • “When is the best time for you? How about Wednesday afternoon, or is Thursday morning more convenient?”

Coaching Focus

  1. Meet with your sales team leader or coach to review the implications of ending every selling meeting with an agreement about when to meet to review the current version of proposals.

  2. Think back to some recent meetings where momentum has been lost. What could you have done differently and better?

  3. What are the most significant meetings that you’re preparing for? How can you plan to use today’s recommendations?

Reminder: One area of practice to emphasise today

Finish every selling conversation today with a sufficiently compelling proposal about next steps

If you have questions or comments, it would be great to hear from you. Just hit reply and send me an email.

Have a great day!

Founder & Leader

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