When Dave Stein and Steve Andersen get together to write a book, you can bet it’s going to be something special, so when Beyond the Sales Process: 12 Proven Strategies for a Customer-Driven World was released earlier this month, I took the opportunity to get a copy and see what these two sales performance heavyweights had to say. I was delighted and gratified to discover that it was not another flash-in-the-pan methodology-of-the-moment for salespeople to learn and toss aside. In this book, Dave and Steve articulate (with confidence and conviction) an approach that is clearly grounded in their combined, extensive understanding of what B2B customers want and value, and how they buy. Even better, every strategy they define can be applied almost immediately, because they also tell you how to execute each—a component that typical sales books often lack.
Specific and Actionable
Beyond the Sales Process is engaging and purposeful, prescribing specific actions, activities, and tactics for building a high-value relationship with your customers. You’ll encounter no ambiguity, no guesswork, and no gaps or lapses, as you join the authors on a comprehensive exploration of before, during, and after the sale, with “actionable awareness” (See Strategy 5) to be gained on every page.
Beyond the Sales Process doesn’t pander, presuming you know industry-specific terms and trendy acronyms, nor does it talk down to its audience, treating every reader as a beginner. You could be an up-and-comer or a seasoned expert—you’re going to learn something valuable about how to succeed in this post-recession, buyer-driven economy. And don’t skim over the nine case studies, where global leaders from a range of industries—and their customers—describe firsthand how they implement Engage/Win/Grow strategies and co-create value together. That level of insight about how stuff really works can be hard to come by—in Beyond the Sales Process, Dave and Steve have served it up in generous portions.
Comes with success built in
Are you absorbing and putting their strategies to work? At the end of each chapter, Dave and Steve provide no-nonsense diagnostics, so you can test yourself on where you are and where you need to go. (Ignore these questions at your own peril. If you can’t answer them, you’re likely to lose your customer and the deal.)
Looking at the “sales process” from a different perspective, this book urges readers to leverage the time when your customer isn’t actively buying anything, to build trust before there’s a sales opportunity, and to build on your past proven value after the sale closes—and it tells you how to do it. Want to be included your customer’s long term plan? Beyond the Sales Process breaks down how to get there.
If you’re looking for tips, trips, and shortcuts, there are mountains of sales books that claim to have the magic bullet. If you want to know how to build and execute a proven plan to engage, win, and grow a long-term relationship with your customers, read Beyond the Sales Process.