How to Be Intellectually Curious in Sales

first_img Essential Reading! Get my 2nd book: The Lost Art of Closing “In The Lost Art of Closing, Anthony proves that the final commitment can actually be one of the easiest parts of the sales process—if you’ve set it up properly with other commitments that have to happen long before the close. The key is to lead customers through a series of necessary steps designed to prevent a purchase stall.” Buy Now If you want to develop your business acumen, your situational knowledge, and your ability to create value for your clients and your dream clients, you need to become intellectually curious. You have to seek to understand how things work, why people do things a certain way, why people want what they want, and when it makes sense to do something.When I was young and first started selling, I developed the practice of asking my clients questions. At first, the questions I asked were direct, and my goal was not to understand, but rather to elicit the client’s dissatisfaction. The word we used to describe “what is keeping the customer up at night,” assuming they knew what should be keeping them up at night and that they were willing to share it with a salesperson who might be able to help). Later, after I became a better salesperson from having studied Neil Rackham’s work, my questions switched to what his model called “implication” questions. I started asking the question, “What happens if you don’t do something different?”At some point, I realized that creating greater value for my clients meant learning more about their business. I started to ask a different set of questions designed to obtain a real understanding of how their business worked, how they thought about their business and the competitive landscape, and how I might be more helpful to them.One of my clients was responsible for an enormous logistics operations. In a meeting I attended, the attendees from his management team continuously talked about “throughput.” I knew what the word meant, and I had some understanding of how what I sold would impact their throughput, but I wasn’t certain. So I asked my client to explain it to me, and then to share with me how I might impact that metric in a meaningful way. And then I asked five more clients to give me their views on the same metric, and in doing so, I became more valuable to my clients and my dream clients.Ask HowIt is valuable to know how different business models work. If you want to create value for the teams that manage and run businesses, you need to know how things work. You want to understand their overall strategy as a business, something you can quickly learn to discern by reading The Discipline of Market Leaders by Michael Treacy and Fred Wiersema. You can also learn a good bit by simply watching or listening to CNBC, especially in the morning, when they interview CEOs and business leaders.To be intellectually curious, you have to want to know how things work. You can ask your client how they compete in their marketplace and what they believe differentiates them from their competitors. You can ask how they handle some process or execute something that provides you with a better understanding of what they think they need to do to be successful. You can even ask how they feel about some strategic or tactical decision they need to make for their business.In exploratory or discovery calls, the depth and breadth of what you discover—and what you help the client discover about themselves—is going to be based on the level of questions you ask. Asking “What’s keeping you up at night” might still be a useful question, and you will have clients who want to share the answer and acquire some help solving those problems. However, that question doesn’t demonstrate a real interest in their business, nor does it indicate you have a deep enough understanding to be considered a future partner.If you work selling to and serving businesses and the people that run them, you have to intellectually curious enough to understand business principles.Ask WhyFrom time to time, you will be baffled by some of the things your clients and prospects do in pursuing some result. Sometimes you will see them doing something that doesn’t seem to make sense, only to find out is working well for them, giving you new insight as to how you might do something different or better. Other time you will see your dream client doing something so wrong that it’s difficult to believe. What you want to know is “why” they do what they do.If you are going to be intellectually curious, you are going to have to ask why, without being judgmental. You will have clients who seem to be doing things in ways that make the outcome they need difficult for them, only to find out there is a good reason why they do things in a certain way. How you provide a solution that gains their commitment to work with you may very well depend on you knowing how to improve their results in a way that doesn’t disrupt something that needs to be done in a certain way.But asking why often reveals areas where an improvement is available to your client because they don’t know there are better ways available to them. If you believe that salespeople are no longer necessary because their clients and prospects can research on the internet, likely, you don’t work in sales. The intellectually curious salesperson has the benefit of learning from clients and prospects, coupled with the experience of working with clients to know more about the nuances around decisions and solutions that exceed anything one might learn from researching company websites.Taking care of your clients and prospects requires the curiosity to understand why certain things are done, sometimes this way, and other times another way. You need to know how to think about trade-offs, what this is better than that, and when it makes sense to do something.What They WantSuccess in sales in large part depends on effectively working with and for other people. Even though you are supposed to believe relationships no longer matter in sales, the truth of the matter is that matter more now than ever in a world being pulled in two directions (super-transactional and super-relational). It pays to be intellectually curious about what human beings want and why.Let me give you an easy, sales-related example. I once heard a purchasing manager explain that his compensation was, in part, based on price savings over prior years. He wasn’t interested in cost savings if those savings weren’t visible as a reduction in price, as he was not compensated on the difficult to capture, but very real soft costs.Some leaders invest in outcomes and will willingly pay more for things like speed to market, greater market share, innovative ideas that create a competitive advantage, or any number of things they want. If you’re going to be intellectually curious, you’ll ask them why they want what they want, why it’s important to them. There may not be anything more interesting or useful than understating human psychology and motivation, something worth learning to understand (as much as it can be).If you want to be better in sales, a better sales manager, or more effective leader, and an all-around more successful person, being intellectually curious is as good a place to start as any.last_img read more

Tigresses lead BVR Ilocos leg champs

first_imgUST’s Cherry Rondina gets one over San Beda’s defense in the Beach Volleyball Republic. Contributed Photo.University of Santo Tomas turned back San Beda, 21-12, 21-14, over the weekend to rule the Beach Volleyball Republic on Tour women’s university division in Playa Tropical Currimao, Ilocos Norte.Tigresses Cherry Rondina and Ma. Cecilia Bangad defeated the Red Lioness’ pair of Iza and Ella Viray for the title.ADVERTISEMENT In the men’s university division, Malaysians Mohd Aizzat Zorki and Raja Nazmi Hussin turned back Far Easter University, 21-14, 21-18, to emerge champions in the event that has the Inquirer as media partner.“This leg had indeed the most competitive lineup of teams,” said BVR founder Charo Soriano. “We had teams from Malaysia and Hong Kong and they showcased their world-class athleticism against our local talent.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingCebu’s Jade Becaldo and Rommel Pepito gutted their way out of an opening set loss before turning back Hong Kong’s Giovanni Musillo and Brian Nordberg, 18-21, 21-14, 23-21, to top the men’s open class.The winning pairs received P50,000 in the event sponsored by Nestea, Smart, NLEX/SCTEX and Rebisco, among others. Every 18 seconds someone is diagnosed with HIV Palace: Duterte to hear out security execs on alleged China control of NGCP Pagasa: Storm intensifies as it nears PAR Mike mopes for Jason in the Byron Nelson LATEST STORIES Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ View comments Organizers also held a volleyball clinic for young enthusiasts in Ilocos Norte as part of the group’s “Sandroots” advocacy.“We want to be able to give the kids a chance to learn from the best coaches that we have in beach volleyball,” said Soriano.“In the end, it’s really about teaching and sharing the passion we have one province at a time,” said BVR’s Bea Tan.ADVERTISEMENTcenter_img Cayetano dares Lacson, Drilon to take lie-detector test: Wala akong kinita sa SEA Games Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students PLAY LIST 01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes BREAKING: Cop killed, 11 hurt in Misamis Oriental grenade blast BSP survey: PH banks see bright horizon amid dark global recession clouds MOST READ BREAKING: Cop killed, 11 hurt in Misamis Oriental grenade blast Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Nextlast_img read more

#InquirerSeven: Things to know about Jeff Horn

first_img2. He is an Olympian Pacquiao is usually given the de facto home court advantage, be it in Las Vegas or Dallas. This time, however, the Pacman will walk inside Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium facing a hometown hero.Horn was born in Brisbane on Feb. 4, 1988 and has resided in his birthplace ever since.Come Battle of Brisbane, it’s safe to say that there will be more than 50,000 people in support of their boxing son.ADVERTISEMENT Both fighters are family men, and both also have lovable dogs.Quite some time ago, Pacquiao’s pooch Pacman reached headlines when it dogged the Filipino icon during his runs. According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Horn was called “gay” constantly during his growing up years.The verbal abuse held so much magnitude that the young Horn almost thought of suicide.“I got called ‘gay’ a lot. Words like that shouldn’t hurt me, but I was a kid. It cuts deep, especially when it’s every day. You don’t know how to stop it,” Horn told Sydney Morning Herald.“Day by day, it takes a bit of you. I know the lows you can feel. I’ve had those feelings, like suicidal thoughts. I can remember some days that I felt that because of the bullying.”6. Like Pacquiao, Horn also has a canine companion What ‘missteps’? Beneath his enigmatic identity is a man who battled demons en route to becoming a professor of the beautiful sport.Despite owning WBO and IBF’s secondary titles, Horn is still considered an unknown in comparison to the icons Pacquaio has faced.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutSo to shine a little bit more of the spotlight on Horn, here are seven tidbits about the Aussie.1. Horn is Brisbane’s own son Cayetano to unmask people behind ‘smear campaign’ vs him, SEA Games MOST READ Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Juggling life as a schoolteacher and as a professional boxer can take a toll, and Horn does that looking for flushes, full houses, and pairs.As per Ring Magazine, Horn’s concept of a vice is playing poker. And that’s only his vice.Horn hasn’t forgotten his nerdy side as he regularly, according to The Australian, plays Monopoly every Saturday.He also likes to play a role-playing board game called Settlers of Catan. Horn, too, has a dog and it’s name is Lexie who, according to The Australian, likes to hang by Horn’s legs whenever the Aussie fighter watches television.7. Horn’s vice is poker Growing up, Horn wasn’t the fighter Australians now adore.He was the one wearing the glasses and playing board games and with such silence, Horn became a target of bullying.According to a story from The Australian, Horn was the victim of a lopsided beating when 30 bullies ganged up on him after school.Horn stood up against a bully, and what he got was a physical beatdown that changed his life.This harrowing experience led Horn to take up boxing and he’s then used that bullying episode every time he steps inside the squared circle.5. He got called ‘gay’ growing up LATEST STORIES Ross wins Best Player award; Rhodes top importcenter_img Horn’s pathway to professional boxing was his short, but memorable, run in the 2012 London Olympics.The Aussie had three fights in the London Games, taking dominating wins against Gilbert Choombe of Zambia, 19-5, and Abderazzak Houya of Tunisia, 17-11.Horn, however, fell to Ukrainian Denys Berinchyk, 21-13, in the quarterfinals.ADVERTISEMENT Horn holds a Bachelor of Education degree to teach secondary school from Griffith University and he’s also worked at a child care center.4. A victim of bullying Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ Pagasa: Kammuri now a typhoon, may enter PAR by weekend Boxer Jeff Horn of Australia poses for a photo following a press conference with Manny Pacquiao of the Philippines in Brisbane, Wednesday, June 28, 2017. Pacquiao, is putting his WBO belt on the line Sunday, July 2, against the 29-year-old Horn. (AP Photo/John Pye)Australian pugilist Jeff Horn does not have the same notoriety as Manny Pacquiao’s previous opponents.Horn, whose “The Hornet” nickname gives him some semblance of flare, actually isn’t a typical run of the mill boxer.ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. China furious as Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong Another vape smoker nabbed in Lucena LOOK: Jane De Leon meets fellow ‘Darna’ Marian Rivera View comments Pagasa: Kammuri now a typhoon, may enter PAR by weekend 3. He’s a teacher Horn has built an impressive boxing resume going undefeated, 16-0-1, and strapping himself with the WBO and IBF Inter-Continental welterweight titles.He’s also the no.2 welterweight under WBO and on July 2 has a chance to become the World champion as he battles Pacquiao (59-6-2).Outside of his expanding boxing career, though, Horn rolls up his sleeves and tightens his tie for his job as a high school teacher.last_img read more

India-England draw first Test at Trent Bridge

first_imgIndia’s Mahendra Singh Dhoni is bowled by England’s Liam Plunkett for 11 runs during the first cricket test match at Trent Bridge cricket ground in Nottingham, England July 13, 2014. Reuters India drew their first cricket Test with England thanks to some heroics from Stuart Binny, Ravindra Jadeja and Bhuvneshwar Kumar on the final day at the Trent Bridge in Nottingham on Sunday.India finished the day with 391 for nine declared in the second innings, a massive lead of 430 runs, with Bhuvneshwar Kumar unbeaten on 63, his second half-century of the match, and Mohammad Shami, who was not out on four.England raised hopes of an unlikely win after picking up three quick wickets for 17 runs in the vital first session to reduce India to a precarious 184 for six. But followed next was a great fight-back by the tailenders, who ensured that England continue their winless streak to nine matches, with some gutsy batting.Binny struck a valuable 78, his debut Test fifty, to save the day for India. It was an entertaining knock from Binny, who had two crucial partnerships with Ravindra Jadeja (31) and Bhuvneshwar.Binny, who hit eight fours and a six in his 114-ball knock, was first involved in a 65-run stand with Jadeja that helped the team recover from a precarious 184 for six and then took India to a position of strength adding 91-runs for the eighth wicket with Bhuvneshwar.Resuming the day at 167/3, India were put on the back-foot right in the first over of the day after Virat Kohli (8) was trapped plumb in front by fast bowler Stuart Broad. The local boy struck again in his next over to get rid of Ajinkya Rahane (24), who flashed outside the off and edged to wicketkeeper Matt Prior.advertisementWith India struggling at 173 for five, the expectations were immense from India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni for a repeat of his heroic 82 in the first innings. But Dhoni managed barely 11 before being castled by a Liam Plunkett.Jadeja, who took 38 balls to get his first run, and Binny then fought back valiantly with their 46-run stand for the unfinished seventh wicket stand. Jadeja had a tough time right from the start and finally found the first run, a four straight over the pacer James Anderson’s head that also drew an applause from the bowler.Having gone wicketless, Binny was also determined to prove his credentials as a handy batsman. The Karnataka all-rounder used his feet well for his three fours and the cover drive off Liam Plunkett was a treat to watch.Binny and Jadeja helped India recover well from a precarious 184 for six to reach 230 at lunch. It was the introduction of the new ball that ended the partnership after Jadeja edged to Prior off Anderson ending his 98-ball vigil that had five fours. It was the first time in his career that Jadeja played more than 50 deliveries.Binny and Bhuvneshwar then scored quickly as 91 runs of the partnership came from 19 overs. Binny got to his debut Test half-century in style plundering Plunkett for 11 runs in the 90th over that also had two well-timed fours. He had a century in sight but was trapped lbw by Moeen Ali with a tossed up delivery.Bhuvneshwar got to his second half-century of the match in style as he struck part-time spinner Joe Root for two crisply timed fours as he scored nine runs from the over. Bhuvneshwar and Ishant Sharma (13) added another valuable 47 runs for the ninth wicket to take the lead past the 400-run mark. Ishant became England skipper Alastair Cook’s maiden Test wicket before both the sides decided to settle for a draw.last_img read more