Winning sales referrals – are you referable?

My new book titled ‘Winning Sales Referrals – How To Win All The Sales You Could Ever Want, Just From Referrals’ was released by my Swedish publishers in September 2011 and rapidly became a best  seller in Sweden. The UK edition is due to be released within the next few weeks.  But here’s something I thought you might like to think about right now because sometimes – indeed quite often, we do need to take a serious look at ourselves and see if there is something about us that is hindering our quest for success. So please do not be offended when I ask you the question – ‘Are you referable?’ If you want to be certain of developing most of your sales through referrals, it is very much in your best interests to be absolutely sure you are indeed referable.

What follows is a list of the key business and personal attributes which are essential to getting all the sales you could ever want – just from referrals. The first step in this process is to go down the list, be totally honest and score yourself from one to ten against each point listed, one being the lowest score and ten being the highest. Think about each point very carefully before giving yourself the score.

I have a positive and ‘can do’ attitude,

I have a pleasant speaking manner,

I am a good listener – I never interrupt,

I am unhurried and never get impatient with a customer,

I maintain good eye contact,

I am client focused at all times,

I am confident but not arrogant,

I am totally trustworthy,

I act in a friendly but professional manner at all times,

I always dress appropriately,

I establish rapport with all types of people very quickly,

I have excellent communication skills – everyone understands precisely what I am saying,

I can explain things simply and I use plain English – not jargon,

I am very likeable,

I can easily make ‘small talk’ and chat about things outside my business sector,

I always deliver more than is expected – I go the extra mile,

I am committed to excellent customer service,

I ask my customers to confirm precisely what they expect from a perfect supplier and make certain I conform to their expectations,

I take notes of everything discussed and deal with all points raised,

I always do what I say I will do and in a timely fashion,

When I make mistakes, I correct them fast and graciously,

I always tell the absolute truth about my product or service and what it can (and cannot) deliver,

I am an expert in my field and can demonstrate this,

I have excellent marketing materials and other supporting documentation that enhance my image,

I am always looking for opportunities to refer my customers or clients.

Now you have openly and honestly completed that first part of the exercise, you will need to decide what, if anything, you need to do to move yourself from a score of less than ten to a ten (or at least a nine).

The next stage is to ask a few other people. Ask a colleague, your sales manager or co-director and two or three customers or clients to go though this list with you. Explain to them that you want to make absolutely certain you are highly referable and that you would really appreciate them being totally open and honest with you and score you on each of those points. Of course doing this with customers also opens up the opportunity to ask them for referrals.

If you have scored anything less than a ‘10’, ask their opinion on what you need to do to raise your score to a ten in their eyes – and make a commitment to follow their suggestions.

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