What does it really mean to be a trusted advisor?
We've brought this up a lot lately. It's only because we think it is a challenge that we tend to grossly underestimate. Most salespeople hear this phrase and interpret it as simply doing their homework on the buyer’s business and their industry before pitching them. But this just scratches the surface.
A recent post by Micheline Nijmeh, “5 Rules For Choosing Sales Technology,” on the Salesforce blog was good food for this topic. The post to buyers. However, by considering Nijmeh’s recommendations from a salesperson's perspective, the article can be experienced a vision statement for what a “trusted advisor” can and should be.
Nijmeh recommends that buyers consider their use case as they go shopping for sales technology solutions:
“You need to know the business problem you are experiencing, and how technology can help you solve it. Make sure that you fully understand your use case. Identify all of the capabilities you’d like to get from the technology and be sure it answers all the questions you have for your business.”
Considered from the perspective of Sales, this recommendation forces us to ask, “Am I taking into account the use case of the buyer? Have I identified all the capabilities they will need to solve their particular business problem?”
And then there were Nijmeh’s recommendations on scalability, implementation, and adoption:
“It’s easy to purchase a tool that solves the problem that you have today. But does the solution’s functionality meet your current and future needs? You need to consider your requirements today and tomorrow when looking at a solution ... Understand what integration is needed with existing solutions and how it fits into your sales process. Is it a solution that your team can easily adopt and use consistently?”
These are the questions that our buyers agonize over. These are the questions that we need to solve to get sales across the finish line. If we are serious about being a trusted advisor, we need to consider these questions. How will our solutions scale with the buyer’s evolving needs? How will I help my buyer solve the ever-present challenge of adoption? We need to know the answers to these questions before our buyers do.
There is more to Nijmeh’s post, and, if you want to understand just how far you have yet to go to become a trusted advisor, we recommend that you give it a read. At the very least, you will likely come to a conclusion that simply “doing your homework” on a buyer’s business and industry is no longer sufficient to earn your “trusted advisor” badge.
To learn how Consensus gives personalized answers to buyers' questions, click on the orange “Watch Demo” button below.