Have you ever heard from a prospect, maybe from an executive, that they don’t like consultants? How about the dislike towards sales people? Where did this bias against consultants and sales people come from?
Recently, I went to a meeting with several executives that I was about to meet for the first time. Before I walked into the conference room, the staff member who had organized the meeting whispered to me, “By the way they really hate consultants”. I felt like Pepé Le Pew.
Another perfect example is when you are sitting at the table for dinner and the phone rings; the first thought that comes to mind, “I hope it is not someone trying to sell me something!”
When sales people are cold calling they make 10 or 20 calls a day. The least we could do is greet them, possibly offer them a drink, or even say thank you, but no thanks. We’re just humans and we’re only doing our job, sometimes people forget this. Like the famous Rodney King quote says, “Can’t we all just get along?”
The schematics constructed around generalized statements and reactions bring people to forget that behind a sales person, sales manager, CEO, business person and other work force individual(s) lies a human being. There are some people who will try to be open to us, but others will be closed and cold; their loss.
One reason why there may be a bias towards consultants is the belief that they rarely yield a direct measureable and tangible result. In a short survey I conducted one of my respondents mentioned how they have had a negative experience with consultants due to:
- Projects running over.
- Not keeping follow up commitments
- The consultant or sales person pushing their agenda and not the company’s.
- Not delivering results that were promised.
If sales people and consultants are prepared to measure and share results regularly while working with clients this could assist in disproving this particular bias, as well as improve client-consultant relationship(s). If someone is working with you or for you, the tendency is to want to be kept up to date. Wouldn’t you agree?
In part 2 of Why people don’t like consultants I will share with you a second tip that can help turn this bias around.