Are your problem solving methods feeling stale? Read this blog post to learn how to spruce them up to make the most of client interactions.
“If I had an hour to solve a problem, I’d spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem and 5 minutes thinking about the solution.” – Albert Einstein
Sales people spend countless wasteful hours coming up with solutions for problems they think their client has, and not talking to the client about their real problems. Going the wrong way can cause a lot of unnecessary pain for both the buyer and seller.
Don’t make this mistake! Make time to analyze the problem to come up with the right solution.
Unique and Compelling Problem Solving Methods For Salespeople
5 Steps to Problem Solving
- Uncover and define the problem
- Create a list of possible solutions
- Choose the best solution
- Create a plan to implement the solution
- Implement the solution
Uncovering and Defining the Problem
This is the fun part!
Working with the client to uncover and define the problem gives you a chance to get to know them. Working through this phase takes skill. This skill can only be developed by DOING IT!
But, don’t do it alone. Be sure to include others in the brainstorming to come up with a variety of results.
List Possible Solutions
Once the brainstorming is done, start getting solutions down on paper.
If you don’t think you have time to do this, make time. It’s critical to come up with many choices to choose from. One size does NOT fit all problems.
A top seller knows which solutions work best for every type of problem for every type of client.
Choose the Best Solution
If you've done a good job in coming up with a hefty list of solutions, this step should be relatively easy.
Feel free to dip into your problem solving tool box and think of solutions that have work for you in the past. Don’t be afraid to reuse what worked in the past.
Sometimes, you’ll need to use the trial and error method. At times, the solution you think is the best might not work. Don’t despair.
Remember, you created a hefty list, so there are other choices to be tried.
Create Implementation Plan
When you thoroughly vetted the solutions and have the right one, you’re ready to create the plan. It's crucial to pay attention to every detail and develop a strategy to present the solution to the client. Also, be sure to bring as many SME’s into the process.
Now, you’re ready to face the client.
Schedule enough time with your buyer to allow you to explain your thought process around the solution and get feedback. They may love your idea’s, or they may not. You might have to go back to the drawing board.
Think of this quote: “How do you eat an Elephant?”…….”one bite at a time.” Problem solving takes time.
Implement the Solution
This is the moment you become a Rock Star!
Having come up with the best solution, it’s time to apply it to the client's problem. If you do this well, it will certainly make a difference in your career and catapult you for ordinary sales person to problem-solving hero.
Since you have payed attention to every detail in your plan, implementing it will be easy.
Good problem solving methods lead to satisfied buyers
Using the proper problem solving methods will allow you to gain confidence from your buyers. With this, you will become their “go to” person to solve the problems to increase their bottom line.
At Criteria for Success, we spend a lot of time developing tools to help our clients be better problem solvers. Be sure to check out our latest eBook, “The Ultimate Guide to Storytelling in Sales.” It contains a whole chapter on problem solving and you can download it by clicking below!
Now, go solve some problems!