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Reader's Review, December 2014 - January 2015


By John D. Baker



LET'S CLOSE A DEAL: Turn Contacts into Paying Customers
for Your Company, Product, Service or Cause

By Christine Clifford
189pp. Hoboken, New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons, Inc, 2013
Hardcover (USA) $22.99



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Christine Clifford is an award-winning salesperson, an entrepreneur, an author of many books, a highly applauded speaker and a well-known business consultant. She is also an expert in negotiation.

Ms. Clifford's career is studded with examples of her ability to appraise and seize opportunities and close deals both as an employee and as a CEO in a wide range of endeavors. Early in her work experience, Ms. Clifford worked as a Hanes L'eggs route driver; joined SPAR Marketing Services and became the industry's top sales producer for eight years in a row, eventually rising to Senior Executive Vice President where she closed the largest services agreement in the industry's history with Procter and Gamble.

In succeeding years she founded and became CEO of several organizations: The Cancer Club; Divorcing Divas, L.L.C., and Christine Clifford Enterprises. She also became a Certified Public Speaker, author of almost a dozen books and many articles, and a highly respected consultant. Throughout her rich and varied career, Ms. Clifford developed and practiced creating and completing deals that appealed to others. This book tells its readers how to do such deals and explains in detail how to close, support and build upon them. It is a valuable tutorial that any salesperson and any CEO will benefit from reading.

The focus of this work is on how to present information in such a persuasive manner that sales and negotiation targets not only hear it, but also are receptive to its message. More frequently than we like to believe, an organization's representatives present a muddled message that misses the mark. This is a book that uses small, structured strategic actions to separate your company from its competitors and rapidly build relationships with key personnel in target enterprises. In short, Ms. Clifford presents her playbook on winning and handling clients and tells her readers how to use it to close deals.

Let us see what sorts of techniques and strategies you will discover in this work. The author calls her basic approach "win-win-win." Essentially, Ms. Clifford's approach is designed to make the salesperson/negotiator, the targeted partner and the initiator's organization all winners. And even more importantly, as a consequence of the manner in which the emerging relationship was built, the deal that supports it a long-term one. What organization would not welcome such an outcome? It is every organization's dream come true. Therefore, what is the recipe?

Our author makes clear that the way to the deal is a simple one. It is good old-fashioned treatment of one's future partner. Essentially, it is to prove your interest, your care for the time of others, and your on-going value to your future partner. How? Here are some examples from the book. Listening to your counter-part; understanding why people make deals and targeting your proposals to your partner's needs; enhancing your partner's business by tailoring your offerings so they can be as premiums to increase your partner's business; sending thank you notes; always asking permission before sending materials to others, using other's names only with their permission, etc.

Each of these items is another straw that binds the relationship. Each, however, is far too often left to fray or even ignored. Solid it advice that all sales personnel and negotiators should find can tip the balance to "win-win-win."


Recommended.

John D. Baker, Ph.D.
Editor


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The Negotiator Magazine  December 2014 - Juanuary 2015 Copyright © 2014 The Negotiator Magazine