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Selling Tactics
The Bottom Line Approach
By Timothy F. Bednarz, PhD, American Management Development Group

When selling to the senior management of a company, executives are concerned about the bottom line results your product or service will provide to them. There is little interest in the technical specifications and operational aspects of the product or service.

Implications to the Sales Person

If you want to sell to top level management, you had better be prepared to talk the language of return on investment and financial gain. Save the technology and operations talk for operational and line managers. When talking to top management, tell them what you can offer in terms of financial payoff and payback.

Additionally be prepared with a thoroughly thought out and conceived plan for management to consider. Every aspect needs to be considered and anticipated.

The Application

Senior managers have little time and patience and are results oriented. The sales approach must appeal to these traits. Your presentation should address four key points:

Significance: There must be a significant problem or opportunity to draw their attention to which has an impact on their business. You must be able to demonstrate in financial terms they can agree to, concerning the significance and impact on their business. They will not take your word for it without positive proof.

Solution: Once you have caught their attention and they agree to the significance of the problem or opportunity, you must provide a workable solution. It must demonstrate in clear and precise terms how your solution will impact their business.

Documentation: Prove in financial terms how your solution will work for them. Document the potential profitability, cash flow and the financial impact of the tangible and intangible benefits. Show the cumulative impact on their business.

Additionally, demonstrate through testimonials how your solutions have worked for other customers. They want to know your company will be up to the task.

Action Plan: Provide a workable plan of action documenting how and when your solution will be implemented detailing each step of the plan and the impact on their business.

Something to Think About

1. What is your existing approach to senior management? How well does it work? Explain.

2. Do you tailor you sales presentation to the personality traits and informational needs of senior managers? How? Explain.

Copyright ©2001 by Timothy F. Bednarz,PhD All Rights Reserved

Timothy F. Bednarz, PhD is the Principal Partner of the American Management Development Group. He can be reached at 800.654-4935 or Find out more at

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