The Schedule the Next Event or Permission Play is the final play of each routine in the Griffin Hill Sales Process. The importance of this highly effective play was highlighted for me while reading a recent blog written by Sam Manfer. In his post, Manfer points out that more than 75% of sales calls end without the sales person asking for a commitment.
One of the main purposes of the Schedule the Next Event or Permission Play is to set the expectation of moving toward the close. Each time we use the Schedule the Next Event Play with our prospects it adds momentum for doing business. It’s important to know that asking for a commitment is not necessarily the same as asking for the close, which Manfer points out in his blog.
“Now commitment doesn’t mean only asking for the order. It is much broader than that. Commitment can be for the next meeting, the prospects support, and/or getting back to you within a certain time, etc. Commitment is the essence of moving the sale forward. Conversely, refusal to give commitment is the biggest signal that the sale is in distress. Yet, asking for commitment is a rarity.”
This is a brilliant statement from Mr. Manfer. It is so critical in the sales process to keep momentum in your favor. Asking for a commitment for a future meeting sets the expectation of moving toward the close. It adds momentum for doing business together. Because our sales process is the most psychologically efficient way to achieve agreement, each step is logical; it simply makes sense to the prospect and to you that you should take that next step together. Moving from one step in the sales process to the next builds an increasing expectation of closing a deal.
Don’t forget that when we talk about scheduling the next event, it’s not enough to say “I’ll get back to you next week.” There are three crucial elements that must be clear and agreed upon: time, location, and agenda. When, where, and why. If all these are not agreed to, it is not a scheduled next event.
Keeping momentum in our favor also makes it easier to advance the sales process. Each time you schedule the next event or get permission to go to the next stage of the sales process you advance toward the goal of getting a close, and you maintain control of the selling situation. By having momentum in your favor and being in control of the situation, when it is in fact time to ask for the close it becomes a smooth and easy process. Because you have asked for commitments after each sales call, when is time for the close your suspect is ready and should feel comfortable making that decision.