Saturday, April 05, 2014

Sales Joke of the Day (April 5) The Construction Project.

Fred was the manager for a construction project in downtown Rochester, New York.  And his first order of business was to take bids from the local construction companies for the job.  The first interview was with a representative from Zabriskie Brothers Construction.

"You've seen the plans," stated Fred, "How much will you charge to get the job done?"

"Two hundred thousand dollars," replied Zabriski.

"Reasonable, " commented Fred.  "What's the breakdown?"

"One hundred thousand for materials, one hundred thousand for labor."

"Okay," said Fred, jotting down the bid and showing Zab to the door, "I'll get back to you."

The next appointment was with Geno Rasario of Rasario and Sons Construction.  Their bid was four-hundred thousand.  Two-hundred thousand for materials and two hundred thousand dollars for labor.

"That's a little high," said Fred as he showed Rosario to the door, "I'll get back to you."

The third bid can from Ian Lyon Construction and Consulting.  Calculating quickly, Ian Lyon offered, "Six hundred thousand dollars."  

"Wow! That price is high," exclaimed Fred.

"You shouldn't be concerned about price alone Fred," countered Ian.  "You have to also consider the value you will be receiving."

"Would you be so kind as to break that "value" down for me then Mr Lyon?" asked Fred.

"Certainly," replied Ian Lyon.  "That would be two hundred thousand for me, two hundred thousand for you and two hundred thousand for Zabriski Construction."

"Now that sure is my kind of value," said Fred.  "You got yourself a deal."

Moral of the story.   True sales professionals know that in a competitive sales situation they can better their chances of winning the business by presenting last.  By aligning your proposal more tightly to your customers' needs and your customers' sense of value, you'll be able to win the business.  Never play the game of competing on price alone because there will always be someone else who is willing to sink lower than you.

"Few men have virtue to withstand the highest bidder."    -  George Washington