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September 15, 2006

Help me, help you

Here is a good rule for entrepreneurs, sales people, and really just about anybody.  Make it easy for other people to help you.

There is a salesperson at my company who is particularly good at this.  He wants me to call one of his prospects and help assure them that the Gold Systems Password Reset product is the best choice for their company.

I've replace any identifying names with CAPITAL LETTERS.  Here is the email request:

Hello Terry,

I’d like to ask a favor of you.  Please contact MR CUSTOMER at BIG COMPANY in SOME CITY.  MR CUSTOMER is a Decision Maker on a BIG COMPANY Password Reset opportunity.  He is on the SOME DIVISION side of the house.  Your message to MR CUSTOMER would be:

“Hello CUSTOMER, my name is Terry Gold and I am the CEO and Co-Founder of Gold Systems.  I understand you have been working with ONE OF OUR PARTNERS and my team here on our voice based password reset product to eliminate a business issue of resetting passwords.  I just wanted to give you a call and open up another line of communication for you.  I understand OUR PARTNER and OUR REGIONAL SALES MANAGER and OUR PRODUCT MANAGER here at Gold have been assisting your team, but, I just would like to offer up my phone number to you if you should have any questions surrounding our technology or our company.  BIG COMPANY is a very important customer to us and you actually have another one of our products, the V-Dialer running.  Thanks again CUSTOMER.  We use it ourselves, so feel free to call me and say "Terry Gold on his mobile."

Terry, this opportunity is at 70%.  Just as a side note, we do have professional services built in to the bid to reset OTHER PASSWORDs in case, in the odd chance, that comes up if you happen to catch him live.  THE GOLD SYSTEMS DEVELOPER WHO HAD A MOHAWK IN COLLEGE worked with their folks, mainly THEIR TECHNICAL GURU, to prove out this model a while back.  Please let me know if you should have any questions before you call.

Many thanks,

SALESGUY

So, there are a couple of lessons here.  As an entrepreneur, don't underestimate the importance of your title whether it is CEO, President or whatever.  Big companies work with little companies all the time, and for the most part they like the idea that they have the attention of the CEO/President/Founder.  (They may worry if you are also taking the support calls, but hey, you've got to do what you've got to do in the early days.)

The other lesson is that SALESGUY made it really, really easy for me to help him.  He emailed it so he didn't have to try to catch me in the office, so if I was traveling, I could still help him.  He copied my assistant too, and she knows that CUSTOMER is the magic word at Gold Systems, so even if I didn't see it, she would track me down and make sure I made the call.  He anticipated the questions I might ask and gave me the answers, so I didn't have to go back and dig for more information.

If he had just stopped me in the hall and said "Would you call MR. PROSPECT?" I would have, but I would have had to look up the person's number in our CRM system, I would have to review our history with BIG COMPANY and then maybe go back to SALESGUY to make sure that I was hitting the important points.  I would have done all that, but I wouldn't have made the call as quickly.  By the way, I don't really use scripts but if you listened to the actual call that I made, you would hear that I did hit all the points that SALESGUY asked me to hit and then I threw in some of my personal touches.

Make it easy for people to help you.  Be clear about what you want, give them the details they need, anticipate their questions and be concise and respectful of their time.  SALESGUY is a master at this.

September 15, 2006 in Entrepreneurship | Permalink

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Terry Gold has a great post, Help me, help you on making it easier for other people to help you. I want to riff on it, about making it easier for customers to buy from you. Unlike Terrys great positive, demonstrative show-you-how-to-do-it exampl... [Read More]

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Comments

Hey which dev had the mohawk in college?

Posted by: Stephen Potter | Sep 15, 2006 2:29:34 PM

What a great example here! You're absolutely right about how we should all strive to make it easy for others to help us. If your salesperson had just asked you to call that customer, you might have put it off because of all the extra time it would have taken to find out the customer's information. But because the salesperson gave you a script to read from, I'm sure it was much easier for you to get the task finished quickly. Excellent!!

Posted by: RisingSunofNihon | Sep 16, 2006 4:44:01 PM

It's been over 3 days now and you still haven't answered Stephen's question.

Posted by: Marshall Harrison "the gotspeech guy" | Sep 19, 2006 8:03:54 AM

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