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Summary

Few salespeople admit that they are anything but outstanding negotiators—even if their approach is to discount until a buyer says yes. But if a sales cycle has been executed properly, the close should be a logical conclusion, rather than a fire sale or an arm-wrestling contest. Preparation is critical, and the seller should be prepared in advance to execute the following steps, as needed:

  • Verify that you are the vendor of choice, and that price is the only obstacle to doing business.

  • Make sure that you are negotiating with a decision maker.

  • Head off apples and oranges comparisons by having a differentiator and a situational question to highlight the buyer’s need for it.

  • Posture by using prepared polite “no” questions to respond (as many as three times) to requests for better pricing.

  • Ask the buyer if the “get” you want is possible.

  • Offer your conditional “give,” and be prepared to walk if the order does not close at that point—leaving the door open, of course, for further rounds, but only after taking your concession off the table.


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