10 February, 2012 07:24
...especially when you misuse them.
If you want to succeed at executive sales, you have to sound like you know what you're talking about. And the best easy to do that is to know what you're talking about.
Executalk-- the financial language of executive sales-- makes it easy, right? Just learn how to talk about “revenue,” “profit,” “margins,” “ROI” and stuff like that, right?
Actually, when it comes to using vocabulary that demonstrates the business acumen required to be taken seriously when selling to C-level executives, a little knowledge can be dangerous.
Let's start with “profit.”
The CFO you’re pitching says that his company had $8.6 million in profits last year. Is that good or bad? You don't have a clue, partly because you don't yet know the company goals and metrics, but even more so because you don't yet even know what he's talking about!
"Gross profit?” “Operating profit?” “Net profit?” Unless you're reasonably sure you know exactly what he means by “profit,” ASK.
And be sure in your own communications that you don't confuse the various types of profit. It's one of the quick and easy ways we "smoke out" someone who's trying to talk a good game but is really in over his head.
Next time-- 3 (maybe 4) more financial terms that are commonly misused in C-level sales...
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