July 12, 2006
Staff Picks: Mark Howell's Review of Is That Your Hand in My Pocket?
By by Ron J. Lambert, Tom Parker
Question: As a member of the sales profession, are you finding that buyers are more skilful negotiators today than youve ever found them before? Do their companies tend to have policies in place that seem to be designed to restrict your ability to build a relationship that leads to a cozier sales opportunity? Does it seem like they may be receiving training in purchasing that is just as tactical as your sales training? If the answer to any of these questions is yes, you may find Is That Your Hand in My Pocket: The Sales Professionals Guide to Negotiating a compelling and strategic read.
Written by Tom Parker and Ron Lambert, this book is not theoretical. Instead, it is packed with very practical, easy to understand ideas and strategies, designed to give todays sales professionals a fighting chance. Every chapter contains many illustrations taken from the experience of the authors and includes a series of helpful tips. In addition, many of the chapters conclude with a summary of the key ideas, making it easy to use as a resource for review prior to a sales call.
Perhaps the most important and helpful chapter is on preparing for negotiation. Youll find a very carefully detailed template for a process that includes 13 well-defined questions or observations. This template is accompanied by a form in the appendix for incorporation into your organizations strategic preparation. Following the process outlines in the template will enable you to walk into your negotiation prepared for the tactics of your buyer.
One of the most engaging chapters deals with the some of the most common tactics used by buyers to disrupt and derail sales presentations. Each of these tactics is fully described and a counter-tactic is explained and illustrated. Studying this chapter will help you recognize and deal with buyer tactics smoothly and professionally.
Since studies have shown that well over half of all face to face communication is nonverbal, many companies now include body-language awareness in their sales training, but a refresher course is always in order. Is That Your Hand in My Pocket features an overview of sixteen of the most common nonverbal cues that occur in communication. This chapter could easily be used as in-house training material. In fact, the authors have included a 20 scenario test that incorporates awareness of nonverbal cues and buyer tactics that could be used along with some role-play to improve negotiation skills.
And the most intriguing chapter? Definitely the step-by-step guide to turning the tables and using your new understanding of buying tactics to win the negotiation battle with your friendly car salesman. That could be worth the price of the book!
Whether youre a sales professional interested in improving your negotiation skills or the leader of a sales team and looking for training ideas, Is That Your Hand in My Pocket is a worthwhile addition to your arsenal.
Review by Mark Howell
About Dylan Schleicher
Dylan Schleicher has been a part of the 800-CEO-READ claque since 2003. Even though he's stayed on at the company, he has not stayed put. After beginning in shipping & receiving, he joined customer service and accounting before moving into his current, highly elliptical orbit of duties overseeing the ChangeThis and In the Books websites, the company's annual review of books and in-house design. He lives with his wife and two children in the Washington Heights neighborhood on Milwaukee's West Side.