There are 5 big mistakes that will kill a deal with a big fish. They are:
- Not meeting the client’s expectations;
- Mishandling a client crisis;
- Taking on more than you can handle;
- Putting all your eggs in one basket;
- Up cash creek without a paddle.
Any one or combination of these may not only kill the partnership, but also has the ability to take down your entire company. We’re going to take a bit of time to discuss each one of these; in this lesson we’ll cover the first two.
Not Meeting Client’s Expectations
It is essential you give your clients exactly what was promised during the negotiation phase of your relationship. If an event does happen where you find yourself unable to meet your client’s expectations, not only do you have to find a way to fix the situation, but it is also your responsibility to find out where it all went wrong.
A couple of things could have contributed to this problem:
- Bad salesmanship. It is possible that your salesperson was trying too hard to seal the deal and didn’t listen to the client’s needs;
- Lack of communication. This breakdown usually occurs between the salesperson and your operations department.
In order to avoid these mistakes, you need to put a clear plan of action into place that all of your sales staff is required to follow:
- Think before you speak;
- Give yourself a break;
- Perfect your process;
- Pre-format over-deliverables;
- Stay hands-on throughout the entire process;
- Define success.
Mishandling a Client Crisis
Crises will happen, it is how you respond to and fix them that will define your company and your interaction with clients. You must respond quickly and effectively. This will help you build trust and confidence with your client.
Some simple tips can help you deal with any client crisis:
- Take responsibility and apologize, regardless of who is at fault;
- Act swiftly and effectively;
- Step in and take control of the situation;
- Never point fingers or place blame;
- Stay in constant communication with your client;
- Stay calm throughout the situation;
- Keep your eye on the ball.
Now that you know the two primary mistakes that can kill a big fish deal, you will be better prepared to avoid making these mistakes in the first place, and know how to put a plan of action into place in the event of a crisis.
If you need help with any of this, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me for guidance.
Next time we’ll highlight the 3rd and 4th killer mistakes you can make in working with big fish clients.