This is a guest blog by Lindsay Diven, CPSM
It’s interesting that in the engineering industry, our sales teams are often referred to as Business Developers or Client Managers. The sound of the word “sales” makes you think of a used car salesperson or a telemarketer. I get it. You studied to be an engineer and practice your craft with pride, as you should. You are very skilled in your expertise.
However, there is a point, when you must win that next project for your team or firm. This typically involves finding potential new clients and meeting with decision makers. Having worked with engineers for more than a decade, I know that this is easier said than done.
Resisting Business Development Meetings
You may resist meeting with clients because you feel you must sell your experience and ideas. This often feels like a “dog and pony show.” The clients often feel this way too. They don’t want to sit in an hour-long meeting listening to how great you and your firm are. They are busy too and more often not taking as many “sales” meetings or are making them shorter. I have experienced some clients only giving us 15 minutes!
So, how do you make business development easier for you and more accepting for your clients? How do you make those type of meetings valuable to both you and your client so that each party feels their time wasn’t wasted?
You do this by redefining business development.
First, let’s start with the original definition.