I had the opportunity to have a brief conversation with a Sales Representative from one of my suppliers, over coffee, yesterday afternoon. He made me stop, think, and evaluate(once again) the real core of why we do what we do. Is the main goal strictly sales, numbers, and profit? Of course we need to provide an income/provide for our families but does it go a little deeper than the 'almighty dollar'? In my opinion, it does. You should be able to give your clients value, quality, service, and trust - the income may follow one you have established the real core.
The following is the list of questions that he asked me about our business.
1) What are your core suppliers and the percentage of business from each?
2) What are the core products from each supplier?
3) What are your strengths in the market?
4) What are your opportunities for growth in the market?
5) What are your goals for 2016?
6) What are the biggest threats to your business in the future?
7) What is your most significant accomplishment in the past year?
8) What do you expect from a supplier and why do you buy from us?
9) What areas do we need to improve or maintain in order to help grow your business?
Of course the questions are meant to derive certain information in order to help corporations drive sales, meet the customer's needs, and give value to their customers. It is up to the salesperson which one comes first...the good salesmen already know the answer. Notice that questions 8 & 9 will have nearly the same answer.
Our question to our valued clients/customers is this, 'What can we do in order to provide you with more value in our service??'