It is amazing how often I’ll hear sellers talk about those prospects (and even clients) that absolutely drive them crazy. I’m not just talking about those really demanding customers who expect the impossible or those who expect you to constantly deliver world-class champagne on a cheap-beer budget. I’m referring to those situations where there’s some kind of a personality conflict, or you’re dealing with a person who consistently makes you wonder if you still want to do this kind of work.
If it’s not really worth it, why do you continue to put yourself through it?
Why not talk with your sales manager about the conditions you face with this account, and see if they have some ideas that might improve the situation? Why not ask the client what you can do improve your overall working relationship? Why not talk to a few of the more seasoned veterans on your staff, and see how these co-workers have handled similar situations in the past?
And if you can’t come up with a way to fix this, why not fire the client? If you’re miserable, you’re not going to accomplish the best possible outcome for the client, nor yourself.
Yes, we all work for a paycheck. But we also work for a living. And if you have a prospect or client who makes living this stressful, it could be that they don’t conform to your ideal customer profile.
How Do We Determine Our Ideal Customer?
There’s a great acronym that helps us define our ideal customer, and though it doesn’t roll off the tongue with ease, it’s DAPVALY:
D: Dollar potential
A: Access & Credibility
P: Product Fit
VA: Value-Added Fit
Y: Your Personal Reasons
The Y in DAPVALY stands for your personal reasons for wanting to work with this account (whether that's a current account or you're in sales prospecting mode)… it might be related to your passion for what they sell, your shared experience in that industry, your personal bond with the key person in that organization, or some other reason that’s important to you. Sometimes, you can have personal reasons that you don’t want to work with a particular account!
Could you be more productive with a different prospect? Is this client causing you more anxiety and costing you more time than they’re worth? Just because the Y is at the end of DAPVALY doesn’t mean it’s the least important of reasons that you think this is an ideal client. It could be that she’s just not that into you, or maybe you’re just not that into them.
(And yes, I am starting to think of funny lines from romance movies, like, “No, honey, it’s not you... it’s me…”)