Co-Development: A Winning Strategy

In 2010, as a Growth Leader for McGladrey, a colleague and I decided we would take a different approach to the usual sales tactics we had seen and done ourselves. Like many of you, when in a sales meeting, we focused on our firm’s expertise and how we could provide solutions to a prospect or client’s business. However, too many people were leading their sales pitch with their value proposition, and, all of a sudden, we were ‘one of many steak knives’ sitting around the table. In order to position ourselves differently, we needed to present ourselves and the firm differently.

Clients/prospects seek us out as a solution to many business issues or concerns. But what we learned is that they want expertise with know-how and an ability to apply that expertise. They needed for us to demonstrate the application of the expertise. Clients/prospects want to feel like they had a hand at the table when designing a solution that works for them. Their fingerprints need to be all over the solution! After all, what level of buy-in and commitment do clients and prospects really have if they are just handed a solution?

Co-development is the winning strategy. Using this approach allows the client/prospect and their external advisors an opportunity to work together to craft and implement a solution for their business needs. Too many consultants use the “to them” solution versus the “with them” approach. Both clients and prospects need to recognize that you truly understand their issues and concerns and have the background and knowledge that will provide them a solution. And a co-development strategy showcases your ability as an advisor and as a firm that you genuinely listen to their concerns, hear the problems and issues, and have the skills needed to guide them to a solution. Getting to see you demonstrate the expertise, capability, teamwork, communication, and follow through needed definitely vaults you ahead of other competition that is out there. And, in essence, you are giving them a glimpse of what working with your firm will look and feel like.

My colleague and I found immense success as we moved towards the co-development sales tactics. Our win rate dramatically increased in our pipeline process, and, over the next few years, we had a lot of great success. As I have moved into my role at The Rainmaker Companies, I brought with me the same concept that has now been adapted and worked into our philosophy of helping firms grow. We strive to ensure that we really understand what our clients or prospects are looking for and co-design a solution that will make the individual, team, and firm successful.

Next Steps

If you would like a more detailed explanation and process for going into a sales meeting to co-develop solutions for any business, please Contact Us to schedule a complimentary phone consultation. The Rainmaker Companies can help you Grow Your FirmGrow Your Practice, or Grow Your Self, and become a trusted business advisor in your field as well.

J. Daniel Brooks – Chief Executive Officer