When dealing with two or more people in a sales presentation ignore the “quiet ones” at your peril.  Here’s why…


This is Rashid Kotwal.

I was about 16 when I learnt one of the most valuable sales lessons in my life.  Not that I knew it then.

The mother of my best friend said, our husbands think they’re the head of the family, but we’re the neck that turns them.

Oh never a truer word was said.  Especially when you’re selling to a couple.

Very often one party, often the man will appear to be the dominant one.  They’ll appear to take charge, ask the questions, and appear to be the decision maker.

So you focus all your attention on them while ignoring the other person.

And that is a huge mistake.

Doing so risks alienating someone who can kybosh the deal as they don’t feel included and listened to.

So when dealing with a couple make sure you stop and ask the quiet one what they’d like to add, know more about etc.  And how they feel about the solution you’re proposing.

This is especially true if you’re dealing with financial services such as financial planning, stock broking, property investment and mortgages.

The same rules apply if you’re presenting to a group.

You must ensure every person is on board with your solution.

Not doing so can be a fatal mistake I’ve seen all too often.

Case in point was an organisation that asked us to analyse why they’d lost a new multimillion dollar deal with a client they’d previously done a number of successful projects with.

They’d put in a tender response and based on their past work, been invited to present to a evaluation panel.

Three of the four people on the panel had been involved in past projects and knew them well.

The fourth was a project accountant who’d never worked with them.

Our client assumed their great work in the past and the positive relationships they had would get them over the line as a shoe in.  But it didn’t.

The accountant did what most accountants do.  Looked at the bottom line figure.  They weren’t the cheapest and as they hadn’t built a relationship and explained their value proposition in terms he understood, sunk the deal.

A costly lesson for our client.

So when you’re dealing with multiple stake holders in a sales process you must develop relationships with everyone involved.

But that’s not enough.  You must also find out what could motivate them to say yes or no to the deal.  And that includes taking their personal self interest into account.

Something we drill into all our clients is that the bigger the organisation, the greater the possible disparity between what’s good for the organisation and the personal best interest of the decision makers.

What does this person have to personally gain or lose by accepting your solution.

Classic examples are could this solution make my job redundant?  Or would I lose power and influence?

I’ve covered this in more depth in a previous video, ‘Why ignoring personal agendas will cost you sales’.  You can find it on our site revealedresources.com.

Wrapping up.  Any sale which involves two or more stakeholders exponentially rises in complexity.

Having worked in this space for over 30 years, as an on the ground salesperson, sales manager and now coach and mentor, I can help you navigate the complexities and significantly improve your results.

Drop me a note at revealedresources.com and we’ll take it from there.

And last but not least, if you haven’t requested our COMPLETE professional sales conversation structure, what are you waiting for?  In it we outline what we and our clients in 45 industries have used to close significant high ticket business.

Message me with your email and phone number if you’d like it.  No strings.  Take it, use it and tell us your results.

Till next time, this is Rashid Kotwal.

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