Did you create value during your last sales call? How much value exactly? What was your dream client’s perception of that value? Did you influence the buying process? Did you create trust? How much?
Does your dream client like you? Are you more likable than your competitors? What is the depth of your relationship? Is it as strong as it should be? What metrics are you using to determine the strength of that relationship?
Did you uncover your prospective client’s real motivations? Is the worldview he described really his or is it the company line? Are the buying criteria he described what will really be used to make a decision? Or is it really a price-based decision, with the criteria serving to justify his demand for a lower price?
This list could go on forever.
The world is ruled by invisible forces. Most of what affects our lives, including the outcome of a sales opportunity, can’t be seen. We can measure much, but those measurements often don’t reveal anything we can rely on with scientific certitude.
Keep your processes and methodologies. But none of this is to suggest that you shouldn’t follow a sales process and adhere to good sales methodologies. It doesn’t mean that generalizations and patterns aren’t valuable. There are many generalizations worth understanding. In fact, much of what we do in life is follow patterns that work (or worked at some point in the past).