Million Dollar Consulting® Mindset
From Alan Weiss
Volume 2 Number 9
A monthly newsletter with the objective of quickly and pragmatically helping consultants to improve their craft, results, and lives.
Following Up A Proposal
We talked last month about the steps in a proposal. What do you do after you send it?
Have a date specified to follow up. "I'll call you on Friday at 10 am to see which option you prefer."
Note that your follow up is an assumptive close, not "whether you want to proceed."
Try to have the buyer's personal phone number and email address for follow up.
Don't let travel derail the time line. The buyer can respond by email and phone anywhere in the world. A two week trip does not justify a two week delay.
Never negotiate fees. That's why there are options.
You can negotiate terms, such as reducing deposits and changing installment amounts.
If the buyer is ready to proceed, agree on a specific start date EVEN IT it's remote work (e.g., beginning phone interviews).
Confirm that payment is being processed. (Provide an invoice if you didn't provide one in the proposal package.)
Schedule you next meeting with the buyer.
If rejected, find out why. Ask: "What could I have done differently to have secured your business?"
A buyer told me he was going to Japan for two weeks and would give me the approval upon his return. I know that a lot of bad things can happen the longer you wait.
I said, "If you approve this now, I can get most of the interviews done while you're gone, and we can discuss next steps with that information already secured. You won't be here for your people to appeal to in terms of advance information about the interview results."
The client saw those additional benefits and authorized his depute to sign the proposal in his absence.
Frequently Asked Question
Q. What do I say when the buyer says, "Cut it by 20 percent and I'll sign right now"?
A. Respond, "Add 10 percent to the fee and I'll solve your problem right now"!
© Alan Weiss 2012. All rights reserved.
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