Prospect’s Perspective

The ability to view the sales opportunity from the prospect’s perspective is a valuable skill. If all you ever do is look at things through your eyes you risk missing valuable insights, possibly waste valuable time, and lower your win probability. An example will illustrate what I mean. If you are selling a software project to a Chief Financial Officer, you might think that it makes a lot of sense to move forward quickly. The company obviously needs the new software desperately, it will have a great return on investment and the timing seems perfect to get it in right before the end of the year. However, if you look at it from the prospect’s perspective you might think to ask a few more questions. For example, the ROI is good, but CFO’s have many projects presented with great ROI’s and a limited amount of money to invest. Seeing it from her perspective you might then say, “I assume you have lots of projects with great ROI’s, Where does this one stack up against all of those”. CFO’s also get involved with acquisitions and other events which could get in the way so thinking like she might you would ask, “are there any financing events that could get in the way of moving forward with this project”? These are simple examples but once you start thinking that way, questions you never thought of before will pop into your head. Just be sure you are not engaging in customer empathy which is similar but will lead you to accepting every excuse they give you for not moving forward.

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