Breaking Out of the Pack
How to Become a Trusted Advisor and Unlock Growth in Your Business
Are you an average business person looking to break out of the pack? The reality is, most salespeople, companies, and products are average, and to truly stand out, you need to be better than just good. In every facet of life, there exists a norm, or an average. On any given skill, there is generally some sort of bell curve distribution that steadily increases to an apex and then gradually slopes back down again. About 67% of people fall within one standard deviation of the apex and are considered average, or "in the pack." A mere 17% stand out at the high end, while another 17% find themselves on the low end. As a reader of this article, odds are you fall within the average group. So how can you break out of the pack?
In today's market, clients are savvier than ever and have access to more information than before, which makes it harder to positively influence their perceptions and add value. As a result, becoming a Trusted Advisor and building sales equity is crucial in maintaining strong client relationships. There are many huge benefits of being a Trusted Advisor, as it can lead to increased business and invaluable trust and goodwill.
It Is Not “Are You Good?” But Rather, “Are You Better Enough?”
Say you are an average salesperson. The reality is that the vast majority of salespeople are solidly entrenched in the pack, just like you; they are more or less average. This is true across any behavior, across any skill. There are really only a handful of truly spectacular or truly lousy salespeople, products, and companies out there on the fringes; the rest are hanging out somewhere in the middle.
This is not about whether you as a salesperson are good or bad, but rather if you are better enough to break out of the pack. You cannot simply be good, you have to be relatively better. Then, you will be better equipped to either move up in the rankings or preserve your top spot and consequently grow more revenue. You will be better equipped to execute your strategy. But first, you have to gain a firm grip on how your clients really feel about you.
Adapting to Clients’ Evolving Needs in a Knowledge-Driven Market
Clients are smarter now than they used to be. They know how to conduct research, and in some cases, solve their own problems without ever having to talk to anyone on your end.
Let’s consider the management consulting industry. It used to be that consultants were the only ones who read business and management books. But then, clients started subscribing to Harvard Business Review and doing online research themselves, and they suddenly had access to everything consultants knew which ultimately made it tougher to positively influence a client’s perceptions and add value.
The same phenomenon is probably true for you as well. Regardless of your industry, information is free and easily accessible to everybody. To stand out from the competition you have to go above and beyond, and you have to earn a seat at the table in the earliest stages of the value chain. Having the knowledge and capability to do your job is only a small part of what you have to offer your clients.
So what is it that clients are looking for? They want a partner. Someone they can trust and have strategic discussions with that push their company further.
The Power of Being a Trusted Advisor
Sales equity is a critical factor in maintaining strong client relationships, and it comes with some impressive benefits. One of the many advantages of being a Trusted Advisor is that your clients are more likely to give you the benefit of the doubt when things go wrong. Picture this: you've just made a mistake with a brand new client. They're understandably on edge and might start pressuring you. But, if you've already established a reputation for delivering results as promised, the situation can be very different. Your clients already hold you in high regard, so they're more likely to give you the chance to make things right and even increase the amount they spend with you in the future. So, by building sales equity, you not only earn more business, but you also gain invaluable trust and goodwill.
If you're looking to take your business relationships to the next level and break out of the pack, then look no further than the F-Word in Business free mini-course. In this course, you'll learn how to build meaningful one-to-one relationships with your customers and become their Trusted Advisor. With a focus on mastering the Six Dimensions of Relationship Climate, you'll be equipped with the tools and knowledge to unlock a 33% growth in your business without ever having to find another customer. So if you're ready to aim higher and become more than just "fine", register here to take the first step towards transforming your client relationships and achieving profitable growth.
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