Effective Discovery – Part 3 – Preparation is Key


Preparation is key to conduct a successful Discovery. 


Here are seven tips to prepare for success. 


1) Understand what you already know and what you don’t. Later confirm that you are on track. 


2) Understand the type of Discovery you need to execute; not all are the same. It depends on who you are working with, how many functions are represented, and the authority of the people within the customer organization. 


3) Structure your questions based on the person and level you are speaking with. 

– For technical people, or subject-matter experts: focus on technical and operational items. 

– For mid-level management: focus on business issues and potential areas of improvement. 

– For executive management: focus on the big picture, and more transformational items.  


4) Hidden needs

Don’t just parrot back what the customer told you and assume that is the complete set of requirements. To be the proactive advisor, you need to uncover additional hidden needs. During your preparation, come up with three ideas and test these in customer discussions to find out if your solution can solve any of these hidden problems. 


5) Prepare a list of topics and questions… have in-depth questions ready for when you dive more deeply into an issue. 


6) Prepare an agenda, with session topics, participants, time allotted, and expected discussion items. 


7) Don’t just assume that your prospective customer understands exactly what they want or need; it is next to impossible for customers to understand every capability that is available in the marketplace. After all, they have businesses to run and don’t have much time to stay abreast of new market capabilities. That’s where you can add value and expertise. 


I’m DJ Sebastian, for more info on what it takes to become an Elite Seller, visit my website at thetechseller.com