He Who Identifies the Cause of the Problem Gets to Fix It

Becoming the Business Diagnostician

Business diagnostician is the term I use to remind me of my primary value in the sales process. It helps me remember that the most effective way to sell services to potential clients is to not try to sell to them at all. While every other consultant out there is trying to sell to that prospect, imagine how different and unique you will be when you seek first to help them identify the actual cause of their problem—and for free.

Many consultants create an artificial barrier to their success by placing the objective of selling in front of helping the client to improve their organization's overall condition. In reality, the primary objective with any prospect shouldn't be to “sell them”; rather, it should be to “solve them.” Instead of focusing on selling solutions, seek first to identify the problem and its cause. When you do this, you will create an environment where that prospect sees you as the expert, has already received significant benefit from you, and you've avoided having to become a great salesperson; instead, you made your ability to acquire new business dependent on your expertise as a consultant, not a sales professional. Help the prospect understand the cause of their problem, and they will ask you for help.

At the very core of this chapter lies one of my most concrete personal mantras. I know of no other single statement that holds more potential to increase the profitability ...

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