Many sales representatives think that somewhere inside their customer's headquarters is a single decision maker. But today, even CEOs reach consensus with their direct reports before making important decisions, according to Neil Rackham, author of SPIN Selling.
Meet the Decision Makers
In a recent Selling Power magazine article, Rackham observes that decision making for the purchase of any significant product is shared by three individuals:
1. The Access Owner: This person is prepared to talk to you and give you inside information and access to the other decision makers.
His key question for you: Are you a credible solution provider?
2. The Problem Owner: This person owns the problem that your product addresses and will not normally be willing to spend time educating you about the organization.
His key question for you: Will the solution fix my problem?
3. The Budget Owner: This person has control of the money the problem owner needs to purchase your solution.His key question for you: What's the return on investment (ROI)?
Most major sales decisions are made if and only if the access owner says, "This guy can be trusted to deliver," the problem owner says, "This product will fix my problem," and the budget owner says, "This purchase makes sense financially.
Getting the Decision Makers' Buy-In
Here's a five-step guide to how you can set up this situation: