Today’s Client Stories

It’s been busy at David Kurlan & Associates. For some reason mediocrity is no longer acceptable. We’ve got dozens of new clients with hundreds of salespeople, managers, and executives striving to be over-achievers. Consequently, the stories are becoming plentiful. These are three “real-life” stories from today.

Client comes in and says, “Hey, Rick! I got a call today from the VP of an international company that’s in charge of North America.” So, I ask how the call went. He says, “He calls and says, ‘Hi, this is Dave and I’m returning calls and I’ve got you on my list’.” My client replies, “Really? How’d I get on that list?” Is that beautiful or what? He didn’t thank him for returning the call or say that he was hoping he’d call. He said, “Really? How’d I get on that list?” Perfect! Dave replied that he had received a strong recommendation from a very respected person that my client had lunch with a week-ish ago. They are meeting next week. I love it!

Client calls and says, “Hey, Rick! I just closed a big sale and I KNOW it’s because of what I learned at Kurlan.” So, I dutifully ask, “Really? How so?” Here’s the story. He had a closing meeting this afternoon. His price was $125,000. The prospect tells him that he really likes the proposal, but he’s got another proposal for $115,000. Our client stays cool and asks, “If the prices were identical, whose would you pick?” The prospect replies, “Yours.” Client asks, “Why?” and coaxes a few reasons out of the prospect. The most important reason was that our client asked so many good questions that the prospect really felt that our client understood what the prospect wanted. You ready? Here’s the lesson. The prospect did the deal for $125,000 and when he was signing the contract, he told our client, “You asked so many great questions when we met that when I met with the other guys I kept thinking about those questions and wondering why these other guys weren’t asking them. This client is not only a good fellow, he’s getting to be a great salesman!

A couple of weeks ago a client asks me how to handle a particular situation. He’d scheduled a meeting with a prospect and the prospect asked to reschedule. They did. The morning of the rescheduled appointment, the prospect’s secretary called to say that the prospect was hung up and would have to reschedule. Two months later (week before last), client gets an email saying, “It’s time!” That’s when he asked me what to do. See the guy? Blow him off? I asked him why he even wanted to give the guy another chance and he told me that several of his clients had been trying to put them together. The prospect had a good business, but he wanted it to be better. I told him to tell the prospect that the cost of the meeting would be $1,000. If they decided to do business, the $1,000 would be applied to the first invoice for services. If they didn’t do business, or the meeting didn’t happen for some reason, the $1,000 would be our client’s to keep. Client must not have liked that answer because he sought other opinions. The meeting was yesterday. He didn’t charge anything. Today he called saying that he met with the prospect yesterday. The prospect opened with”….I’m always looking to improve.” He went to, “Things are actually pretty good.” The prospect never shared anything meaningful. Was never emotionally involved in the conversation. Essentially, wasted our client’s time because he had no compelling need to do anything. He would not have paid $1,000 to meet and our client would not have wasted his time.

The lesson: Listen to Rick!

Have a good weekend!

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