How to Make the Small Company the Easy Choice for Elephants

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Steve Kaplan, the popular author of the best-selling book “Bag the Elephant!” says, “Those vendors that can most quickly fall in line with the values and the ways that a big prospect thinks and does business are the ones most likely to be consistently chosen to fill their contracts.”

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Those vendors that can most quickly fall in line with the values and the ways that a big prospect thinks and does business are the ones most likely to be consistently chosen to fill their contracts.

Across Lake Michigan and up the coast a bit from Chicago, the Charlevoix River flows backwards for a short distance every day, an exception to the rule of water following the path of least resistance.

People are like most rivers, always picking the easiest route to get somewhere.

People in big companies (Elephants) who buy small company products – they're like that. And such people are chiefly concerned with quality, practicality and timeliness. To tie in to those values, here are three principles a small company can follow:

Anticipate – When Steve Kaplan’s small company was courting Procter & Gamble, he heard what an important role their Public Affairs Department played in making buying decisions. So Steve made himself and his company's plans known and amenable to the wants and values of that department – and it paid off.

Speak the Language – Every corporation has its own unique language. Learn it. Adopt and use their terminology and phraseology like a second language. Without going over the top, a small company that lets the big client know that it speaks their language – sooner or later it will be accepted as one of them, all else equal.

Hit'em During the Buying Season – All big companies have a buying cycle and a budget season to match that. When a small company finds these out, it should then time its pitch of products and services just prior to budget decisions. Often, opening doors and finding opportunity happens much more easily for a small company when it is timed to the buying season of big clients.

Steve Kaplan, the popular author of the best-selling book “Bag the Elephant!” says, “Those vendors that can most quickly fall in line with the values and the ways that a big prospect thinks and does business are the ones most likely to be consistently chosen to fill their contracts.”

Learn more about Steve Kaplan’s principles of doing business with big clients and about business leadership principles at http://www.differencemaker.com/shop.asp?id=154.

CONTACT:

Michael Drew

850-747-8188

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