In the last of a three part series, Sarah Hinchliffe explores how the Six Habits of Highly Empathic People, identified by Roman Krznaric in his book “Empathy”, can help us to write better proposals.
In Part 1 of this series, we got acquainted with the concept of empathy; tuning in sensitively to our audience’s feelings and perspectives, and adapting our behaviour accordingly.
In Part 2, we looked at empathy in selling – how it can help build relationships, differentiate and create shared values.
Now, let’s explore how we carry our good work into our proposals.
The role of a proposal
Last time, we established that aligning your sales activities to the steps in your prospect’s buying process shows empathy, which helps build trust – crucial for a successful sale in the 21st century. Modern selling is a far cry from sales methods such as the infamous ‘ABC’ (Always Be Closing), which are old-fashioned and downright un-empathic.
In the six-step approach in Figure 1, the proposal is the fourth stage when the prospect requests a formal offer from interested sellers.
By this time, if you followed the recommendations in Part 2, you should be in pole position to win. You will have brought insight to your prospect’s business, positioned your company as an important player and shaped your prospect’s needs. If you did a stellar job, your prospect may have decided not to bother with a proposal at all.
Let’s assume your prospect wants or needs a proposal for legal or professional procurement reasons. Think of the proposal as a continuation of your work to date. Think of it as the opportunity to pull everything together in one compelling document confirming why you are the best choice. With that in mind, we can turn back to our six empathic habits.
The full article can be downloaded from the pdf link below