Bridget Gleason is VP of Sales for Logz.io and my regular partner on Front Line Fridays.
- The topic is ‘relationships.’ Andy saw a recent LinkedIn video claiming that relationships in sales don’t matter. Andy disagrees completely but there are some who believe that. Do they know what ‘relationship’ means?
- Relationships and trust are linked and depend on each other. Bridget says even when she buys online she still has to trust the company and feel a relationship with the brand or get a recommendation before purchasing.
- Bridget shares a story about an online purchase that needed a customer service adjustment. The vendor staff was very timely by email and responsive to her needs. The experience gave her a sense of a trusted relationship.
- Andy sees relationships as the way that two or more (objects or people) are connected or the way that two or more people regard or behave toward each other. This is all integral to sales.
- Having a relationship with a buyer does not mean your customer becomes your close friend. Ideally, you feel positively toward each other, leading to trust, which inspires them to do business with you.
- When the buyer trusts the seller, the buyer opens up about their real challenges and allows the seller to ask meaningful questions that create a productive inquiry.
- Andy refers to The Speed of Trust, by Stephen M.R. Covey and The Trusted Advisor, by Maister, Greene, and Galford. Covey points out four key cornerstones of trust are Motives, Integrity, Competence, and Execution.
- Andy notes that there has to be a relationship in place for you to demonstrate these cornerstone qualities; without a relationship, no one cares about trusting you.
- The Dunning-Kruger Effect is a cognitive bias that when people start to learn about something, they assume themselves to be more competent than they are. Experts they don’t consider themselves to be expert but learning.
- Andy, after 40 years of selling and 650 podcasts, and reading 250 sales books, continues because he considers that there is so much more for him to learn about selling. Bridget feels she also has so much still to learn.
- The statement that relationships are unimportant could have been made by person inexpert in sales suffering from The Dunning-Kruger Effect. There will be more about relationships in a future episode.
- Andy, as an introvert, knows that building relationships can be learned, and practiced, like a habit. Relationships are a normal part of life and of sales.