Teaching Representatives to Negotiate Effectively

Sales representatives need to understand the intricacies of being able to negotiate, as a majority of the time a customer will try to get the most out of the deal while not offering a sufficient amount of money.

A sales management team will have to teach their representatives to negotiate effectively, because of the initial power position that the customer is in due to their possession of the money. This dynamic can change, but only after the relationship is altered so that the client and the rep are on equal ground.

The representative needs to enter into the negotiation with the correct mindset, as any weaknesses and lack of fortitude can be easily noticed by the customer, according to Barrett Riddleberger, the chief executive officer (CEO) of Resolution Systems, Inc., a sales training and consulting firm.

“If you go in with a poverty conciousness you’re going to end up with the bare minimum,” the executive noted. “If you have a prosperity conciousness you know you have significant value for what you’re bringing to the table.”

The representative needs to then figure out if the value proposition that they have delivered is in alignment with the buyer’s needs, wants and business objectives. A perceived value that the customer has in mind needs to be matched by the salesperson, as they need to make the product seem necessary, noted Riddleberger.

A solid background knowledge of the product and the customer need to be established, as incorrect preparation can lead to a crumbling of the representative’s position if the correct framework is not put into place, according to the executive.

“You need to find the driving motives behind the buying decision, and then see how it is integral to the business the economic payoff, long-term cost of ownership to the customer,” said Riddleberger. “You demonstrate yourself as a trusted partner and as an individual you are there as a true problem solver, as they’re also buying you and everything you bring to the table.”

A hard-nosed approach may only work with some customer, but can serve as a way to establish a power position when the negotiations come to a juncture where the price is a serious issue, according to Inc.com.

“You have to make yourself so invaluable that it diminishes the need to negotiate,” the executive noted, “When you do, hold your ground, don’t give unless you get and create a win-win situation.”