Speaker and author Bob Burg has pioneered the idea that the key to sales success is shifting ones focus from getting to giving. In his best-selling book The Go-Giver (co-authored with John David Mann), Burg emphasizes the importance of constantly and consistently providing value to others.
And he doesn’t stop there. Burg promises that by combining the go-giver attitude with his and Mann’s Five Laws of Stratospheric Success, people will benefit their clients and be profitable, regardless of whatever the current economic climate may be.
I recently spoke with Burg about these very laws and his explanation is laid out below.
1. The Law of Value
“Money is an echo of value.”
Burg says that in order to understand this law, you must first get the difference between price and value. While price is a finite dollar amount, value is the relative worth -- or desirability of something -- to the end user. Ask yourself: What is it about my product, service or idea that brings enough worth or value that someone is willing to pay money for it? Determine how you can bring additional value to the equation resulting in an exceptional buying experience. Money is simply a direct and natural result of the value you’ve provided.
2. The Law of Compensation
“Exception value, plus significant reach, equals very high compensation.”
Your income is determined by how many people you serve and how well you service them. While the first Law of Success says you should give more in value than you take in payment, the second states that the more people whose lives you add value to, the more money you’ll be rewarded.
Burg is quick to warn that this law is not about lowering prices. “Trying to sell on low price is a race to the bottom and nobody wins,” he says. “Charge what you need to be charging so you make a healthy profit. When you sell on price, you're a commodity. When you sell on value, you're a resource." If you make a sale strictly on low price, a customer will only stay with you until a cheaper price comes along.
3. The Law of Influence
“All things being equal, people will do business with, and refer business to, those people they know, like and trust.”
Your influence is determined by how clearly you place other’s interests first. This does not mean that you should be self-sacrificial, or anybody’s doormat. But the greatest leaders, top influencers and profitable sales people, run their lives and conduct their business by shifting from an “I” focus to an “other” focus. Make your win about the other person’s win. Refer people to other good people. Make a point to provide information that is helpful to other’s lives.
4. The Law of Authenticity
“Authenticity isn’t something you need to learn, but only to embrace.”
The most valuable gift you have to offer is yourself. All the skills in the world -- sales skills, technical skills, people skills -- as important as they are, are all for naught if you don’t come at it from your true authentic core. When you do, people respond to you, are attracted to you, and feel comfortable with you.
Burg says that often people don’t have the sense of self-confidence to really understand the great market value they bring to the table. This includes unique strengths, character traits, and talents. Be aware if you are lacking in that self-knowledge and come up with an action plan to identify your value. You may need to hire a coach, talk with your sales manager, or connect with your mentor.
5. The Law of Receptivity
“Focus on the giving and allow the receiving.”
According to Burg, the key to effective giving is to stay open to receiving. Just like breathing in and breathing out, you must do both. Often in today’s world people feel guilty about receiving the abundance they’ve earned. This can be a result of their upbringing or environment. But remember that all the giving of value is useless if you don’t also receive the financial benefit.
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