Book Excerpt: Making sales come faster and easier
John told his client that he had undergone a process (Blueprinting) to define what business his company was really in and to figure out how that would influence everything the company did and said.
“I explained to my client that the process challenged everything that we did, how we did it and what we believed in as a company,” said John. “The process got interesting when we started talking about how, because we have been in business for three generations, we have developed techniques and processes and systems and procedures that enabled us to complete our projects significantly faster than our competitors.”
You can imagine that if John’s company finishes the store a week or two sooner than its competitors, the store will open a week or two sooner, and that is a week or two of retail sales the company would not otherwise have. For big-box stores, that can represent $1 million a week or more.
“As we were having this conversation,” John said to the VP, “my son Michael said, ‘You know on our signs where it says, ‘Opening soon’? I want ours to say, ‘Opening sooner.’” John’s client was taken aback by the phrase “Opening sooner.” In disbelief, he asked what John meant. The next part of the conversation went like this:
JOHN: We can get you finished faster.
CLIENT: How can you do that?
JOHN: You know how, when we do a store renovation for you now according to the current specs, it takes 14 weeks? We’ve redefined the specs, and if you let us do it according to the new specs, we’ll get it done in seven weeks—half the time.
The conversation got much more detailed over the next hour, and when it was done, John left the meeting with $2.5 million in new business. What was supposed to be just a year-end review became the most successful sales meeting John ever had.
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