Any one who has ever been around a child will quickly become aware of the word ‘why’. If you ever ask a child to do something they don’t wish to or not do something they do – be prepared for the why onslaught. They want a damn good reason. As parents – you sometimes fall back on the venerable ‘just because’…..it is after the next why we usually get to the real reason. The emotion.
The ‘5 Whys’ is an iterative process used in many problem solving skill sets to uncover the root cause of a problem. Do your exercise it in sales?
Do you use the power of the question ‘why’ to get to the real reason your client is looking to solve a problem or realise an opportunity?
More often than not – issues with sales such as:
- Poorly structured or priced solutions
- Unmet expectations and dissatisfaction
- Uncaptured value
- Buyers remorse
Come from the fact we, as sales people, haven’t explored the root cause deep enough. We haven’t questioned our client deep enough around the real driver behind their purchasing decision. The emotion they are looking to satisfy. Doctors are great at this – if you walk in with a headache, they don’t just give you painkillers and send you on your way. They question what’s causing it.
Unfortunately, when a transaction opportunity presents itself in a conversation – all to often sales people delve in to solving this problem. They see a sale – and drive to close it. They then run the risk of not truly understanding or meeting the clients core driver(s).
Asking ‘Why’ helps avoid assumptions. Whilst previous client’s problems/opportunities may look similar, the core driver(s) may be completely different. Buying a house is a great example – some buy them for wealth creation, some for ego, some for security, some for stability and some for any and all of those reasons and more. Yet they all want to buy a house.
The ‘transaction’ is the same – the driver isn’t. The emotion isn’t.