sales training consultants

Recent Posts

Sales Training Consultants

Performance Through People

The Commitment Staircase

As I mentioned in my previous post, I wanted to channel the energy I saw in a customer’s sales force away from annoying the customer by closing at inappropriate time to adding value to the process. All of the sales people had been taught to close all the time, but when selling more complex products and solutions this isn’t the best approach.
The first thing I did was redefine the definition of closing that we used. The entire sales process is part of the “close,” and if you have followed the process and focused on the customer’s needs, closing will be a natural part of the process, and expected by the customer.

A good way to think about a gaining commitment for a complex close is the commitment staircase, where each small commitment moves you forward to the overall close.

Closing is a process of:
• Clarifying and suggesting customer commitment to next steps
• Ensuring that the customer feels comfortable about his or her decision
• Supporting the customer’s acceptance (once the customer agrees to a solution)
• Gaining or requesting a commitment

Depending on the size and complexity of the sale, the next step could be to ask for the business, or it could be the next step in the customer’s buying cycle. So the sales person should be driving to the highest level of commitment they can achieve in that specific call/meeting e.g. agreeing that the proposal fully meets the customer’s needs, speaking to reference who have already implemented the solution, agreeing T&Cs, etc. In this way, we kept that great closing energy while respecting the customer’s buying cycle (more of this in the next post).

But hold-on, what about the 24 ways I learned to close – surely hard closing has its place? Yes, at a transactional sales level this is true, but I personally believe that buyers have become much more sophisticated and savvy, and so many of the well tried and tested closing techniques taught in the past seem too obvious now. But, as always, I would be interested in how you are finding the best ways to close business and whether you see the commitment staircase as a good way of thinking about the closing process.
This entry was written by John, posted on April 28, 2010 at 11:13 am, filed under Closing and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.

Can we assist with your training requirements? Just email us now with your details and we'll get back to you.


Bookmark The Site.

    Home     Sample courses     Sales skills     Management skills     Personal effectiveness     Consultancy     Training needs analysis     Sales force assessment     Competency based training     Training design     Sales training     The need for training     For company executives     For customers     For sales people     For sales managers     Types of training     Core sales skills     Business acumen     Individual Effectiveness     Sales induction     Delivery options     elearning     Face to face     Seminars     Power hours     DVD/CD     On the job     Measuring success     Level 1 - reaction     Level 2 - learning     Level 3 - behaviour     Level 4 - results     Common mistakes     No clear objectives     Its not sales training     What changes     No executive sponsorship     An isolated course     No sales engagement     The way forward     Tailoring for your needs     elearning for the basics     Face to face for momentum     Power training to re-enforce     Management training     Leadership     Driving the team     Coaching for results     General management     Case studies     Moving from product to services sales     Virtual team leadership     Selling managed services     Developing sales people new to IT     Delivering key executive messages     Changing management behaviour     Resources     Friends pages     Training quotes     Training feedback     Sales training books     Sales books     Leadership books     Management books     Self Help books     Sitemap     Contact

2007 Copyright ©
Bookmark and Share