Proposals, Business Cases, Fee Quotes…
… call them what you like – but they tend to be one of two horrible things:
1. Too long – they take ages to write, usually written outside work hours, are boring to write, contain too much stuff; or
2. Too rubbish – people bang them out with no thought whatsoever. They aren’t tailored. They lack charm. They’re impersonal and unimpressive…
… and customers HATE both types!
One way to transform all this is to create a brilliant template. One that everyone must follow, every time. Why does this work so well?
Because, when people write a proposal, they never start with a blank piece of paper. Instead, they base it on something – usually, last time’s proposal.
(Weirdly, they often do this even if last time’s proposal LOST the sale! Not sure why they’d copy something that didn’t work?!)
Using a best-practice template helps guarantee best practice everywhere. After all, the only way to complete a best-practice template is if you’ve done best-practice selling beforehand – asked the right questions, and so on.
The best way to create this new template is to do what I call my 5Es:
1. Engage – engage with the senior leadership. We want culture change, so need their buy-in and sponsorship
2. Edit – the best people work together, to create the new template, using sales best practices
3. Educate – they then teach all their colleagues how to use this template, and the sales skills needed to be able to complete it
4. Execute – people then use this new template in every sale. To ensure they do…
5. …Embed – the leaders work hard to institutionalise the new template – and do so for as long as it takes – until everyone uses the new template every time
These 5Es are a great approach for embedding new ways of working. So…
… how will you use the 5Es, to cause dramatic and lasting improvement to how you do things?
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