Ask Arte: A Question and Answer Period with Arte Maren

Question: When presenting my product or service in the sales process how can I best judge the prospect’s interest level?

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Arte:  Judging interest level is a step that is done AFTER rapport—a connection would be another way to express it—has been established (without which actual interest could be submerged due to lack of affinity).  In the Hubbard management system we refer to it as a “communication line”, meaning there is a palpable connection from salesperson to prospect.

There are several steps to be considered BEFORE one is concerned about interest level. In fact, the interest level is CREATED by these earlier steps.

Having established a “comm line”, one must then determine, discover, and remove any barriers which are present due to prior poor experience with your or similar product or service.

Note well: You cannot get a valid interest level in your product or service if the actual/real interest potential is suppressed by a prior negative of some nature (which could be personal experience, negative word of mouth or rumor).

Having cleared the barriers, you may THEN begin to judge interest by determining WHY they might want the product or service AND to what degree.  This probing section is where you are interested, not interesting.  What is the prospect trying to handle or why do they feel they need your product?  And, knowing what your product or service DOES handle, and handles well, search for their needs.  How?  By KNOWING the “ideal” for their area/industry/product or service within which they deliver.  What would it look like if it was operating optimally (see chapter 22 “The Ideal Scene” in my book The Natural Laws of Management: The Admin Scale at www.adminscale.net).

When comparing your concept of the optimal condition for the prospects company or activity, you can then determine the area or areas most likely in need of your product as the comparison will reveal a departure from that optimal condition.   You will then be able to more easily perceive a potential need and explore it for prospect reaction.  And if it is proving fruitful, pursue it deeper with further questioning in the area.  The rule here: Possible area of need?  Dig Deeper.

Here’s an example of a huge amateur mistake: Prospect tells you they need the product or service because they are “not very good at explaining the product” and the salesperson then proceeds to explain how their product or service totally handles that and here is why…blah, blah, blah.  When, in fact, through digging deeper for exactly WHAT troubles they have in “explaining the product” you may well discover that they have very poor communication skills as the real difficulty.  Another possibility is they, in fact, don’t think the product or service is actually that valuable (real event in my sales career more than once).  And there can be other possibilities such as they do know how to present but someone in their environment is invalidating their abilities.

So, how do you know if your prospect has interest?  By determining, through the 3 steps indicated above, the most important reason for their purchasing your product or service—from their viewpoint—and THEN explaining why and how your product or service handles THAT.

When you provide the solution to a problem that the prospect knows he has but has not been able to handle, you are in positive buying attitude on the part of the prospect. When you discover A NEED THAT THE PROSPECT DID NOT KNOW THAT THEY HAD, WHICH IS CONTRIBUTING TO OR ACTUALLY CAUSING THE UNDERLYING SITUATION WHICH THEY ARE COMPLAINING ABOUT, you are Golden Done Deal.  Wrap it up and take the order.

What about the “Close?” Oh, that? That comes NATURALLY and effortlessly when having done the above.  It is simply Natural Law.

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Arte Maren has 40 years experience in sales and administration and is the author of The Natural Laws of Management: The Admin Scale. For more information: www.adminscale.net.

Copyright © ArteMaren, 2017.  All Rights Reserved.

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Providing Superlative Service

A positive attitude on sales is important too.

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Selling has a bad reputation. It’s come to mean, in some cases, “forcing something on someone that they don’t want and can’t afford.” That’s not selling. Selling has been a major force in the creation of American society. It’s been a vital link between the producer and the consumer. And the derivation of the word “sell” comes from an old English word sellen, which means “to get, deliver.” It’s the ability to place your product into the hands of the consumer on a rapid basis.

The whole cycle of a product and exchange can be viewed in relation to communication.

Excerpt from The Natural Laws of Management: The Admin Scale, Chapter 7 Superlative Service, Page 32.

Arte Maren, International Speaker, Writer and Business Consultant

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Arte Maren, Author, Speaker and Business Consultant

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The Natural Laws of Management: “Management By Hope”?

It does not matter what you call it—management is defined by its workability! The Natural Laws of Management delves into the infinite number of errors made by managers unfamiliar with “the natural laws” and, more importantly, the most workable of “laws” easily understood and implemented.

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“In the past 25 years, I have observed many a “management system.” You may be familiar with the work of Peter Drucker: “Management by Objectives”. I ran across a company that practices what I would call management by hope. “Are we going to have a better quarter? Dunno, I hope so!” “Will we get the order? Gee, I hope so!” And that there is what I call management by consequence. Employees do things for fear of what happens if they do not.  Now that is a stress environment!

Indeed, L. Ron Hubbard equates such an environment with “being serious”, the enemy of creativity and motivation. In fact, he defines serious as “when interest is important because of penalty.” Of course, as business is a game, it should be fun and treated as a game, as “play with a purpose.” Indeed, Hubbard warns: “The more serious you take the game, the less chance there is of winning.”

Excerpt from The Natural Laws of Management: The Admin Scale,  Chapter 10, Page 50, Chapter on Certainty.

Arte Maren, International Speaker, Writer and Business Consultant

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Arte Maren, Author, Speaker and Business Consultant

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How Does Selling Relate to Exchange?

Although my book, The Natural Laws of Management, is all about management alignment technology, I have provided quite a bit of information on the subject of sales (since I am celebrating my 50th year since my first sales experience and have been selling ever since).

This excerpt is the start of the viewpoint that selling has gotten a bad reputation due to the fact that it is not observed or perceived, even by the salesperson, as a win-win affair. And it is. And the sale is made, to the degree that it is. (Those who go “out-exchange” with their customer, soon no longer are in the sales industry as it becomes less and less “fun” (Yes, providing a needed item or service is FUN,) and more laborious (can I hear “Death of a Salesman” anyone?)

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“Selling has a bad reputation. It’s come to mean, in some cases, “forcing something on someone that they don’t want and can’t afford.” That’s not selling. Selling has been a major force in the creation of American society. It’s been a vital link between the producer and the consumer. And the derivation of the word “sell” comes from an old English word sellen, which means “to get, deliver.” It’s the ability to place your product into the hands of the consumer on a rapid basis.

Excerpt from The Natural Laws of Management: The Admin Scale, Chapter 7, Page 32

Arte Maren, International Speaker, Writer and Business Consultant

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Arte Maren, Author, Speaker and Business Consultant

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Chapter 2, Natural Law: About Standard Administration

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Standard administration is a collection of truths.  An excellent working definition for truth is “that which works.  And that which works most broadly to that which it is applied.”7

If what you are using is not working, it is relatively untrue.  Policies and procedures are the basic truths or guiding principles.  Company and personal stability depends upon having such written “laws” available and known to all concerned.

The continuance of an organization and its leaders can be said to be entirely dependent upon the skill, training and integrity of those who handle the administrative lines, details and contacts of the group.

“THE BEST GUARANTEE OF STABILITY IS ADMINISTRATIVE SKILL.”8

Arte Maren, International Speaker, Writer and Business Consultant

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Arte Maren, Author, Speaker and Business Consultant
7 “Truth” (definition), Hubbard, Modern Management Technology Defined.
8 Hubbard, “Stability,” Policy Letter of 20 September 1969, Organization Executive Course.

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Shaun Kirk Testimonial on His Success Using The Natural Laws of Management: The Admin Scale

Shaun Kirk, Co-Founder and President of Measurable Solutions, which provides business management training and consulting services, talks about his success using the book The Natural Laws of Management: The Admin Scale, by Arte Maren.

Click HERE to go to The Natural Laws of Management: The Admin Scale YouTube Channel.

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Arte Maren, Author, Speaker and Business Consultant

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Author, Arte Maren

 

Common Question: What is the Difference Between a Goal and Purpose?

     Look at it this way: The road is Purpose, leading towards a Goal.

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As L. Ron Hubbard points out, a Goal is “the prime intention”, and a Purpose is “The survival route chosen by an individual, a species, or a unit of matter or energy in the accomplishment of its goal.”

Purpose is how you have chosen to accomplish the goal.  The goal is the ultimate destination, with the purpose being the road you have taken to accomplish the arrival.

For instance, some have the goal of “Improving the health of people so that they experience a better quality of life”, and there are many methods and “roads” to accomplish this: Nutritionist, Chiropractor, Counselor, etc.

When determining a purpose or goal with a client, I will often ask, ”So if that is accomplished or done, what do you then have?” If I can go no further without getting into the ludicrous or way far out, I know that I have a goal in hand.

If you take the above as an example, a step up from “Improving the health of people so that they experience a higher or better quality of life”, would lead us to nowhere. But, if the goal had been stated as “Providing effective nutrition data to clients”, it would easily yield to the next step up: ”Better quality of life”.

This, therefore, indicates that “Providing effective nutrition data to clients” is not a goal, but a purpose, leading to a higher purpose, so to speak.

Happy Trails.

Arte Maren, International Speaker, Writer and Business Consultant

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Arte Maren, Author, Speaker and Business Consultant

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Author, Arte Maren