Agreeing and managing expectations – why does this matter in sales?

If we said to you we’d make 3 sales in July for your business, how happy would you be?  Probably quite happy.  If those sales then turned out to be one off, low value, transactional sales, then you’d likely be feeling a little deflated.  If you agree what the sales should look like, you both know where you’re aiming.

When we set out to work with a customer or supplier, it’s really important that expectations are clear, agreed, and regularly reviewed.

One of our clients is a software company.  The original intention for the campaign and calls was that we would generate leads and meetings. The value of sales for this client is very large, so leads are low volume, high quality – therefore it turned out that the intention to generate meetings in short timescales was not realistic.  We moved the short term goals to conversations and brand awareness, finding the right decision makers and communicating regularly with them.  Long term goals remained the same. Since then we’ve generated leads, with just one being worth over £200K if it converts – that’s their job now to do their thing. They trust us to do our job. One campaign for a manufacturer generated 10 meetings with large retailers, over a 12 day pilot.  The expectation was always that we’d book meetings with large retailers, and that’s what we delivered.  Agreeing  the expectation allowed us to plan and create the data accordingly and developed the trust between us.

At the start of the sales process, it’s really crucial to agree what the client wants, and what you can deliver.  There may be some discussion and pilot periods whilst the understanding is tweaked.  But if this is not done then you risk having unhappy clients even when you’re doing a good job in your own eyes.  Your customer has got to see the value in what you are delivering and that means you’re in agreement that what you’re delivering is valuable.  If you’ve not agreed what this looks like, well it’s a bit like opening up your sat nav app and then not putting in the postcode. You’re going on a magical mystery tour – stressful possibly!

Likewise, whenever you’re going to bring on a supplier – agree what you want, how you want it and by when. This is a partnership, it must be win win and you both need to understand the likely outcomes.  When you take on a new customer, exactly the same applies.  The real value of undertaking this part of the sales process is that is aids your understanding of each other’s business and also helps to seal and build a good relationship between you, based on trust, which is fundamental to success.

Our IT support company recently helped us with some issues we were experiencing with Google. We wrote a list of what needed to be resolved and had a conversation about it. have this great value of supporting people first, then technology, so they really understood that we don’t need to know the techie bits, we just wanted it fixed! Fix it they did, with great service and understanding and not a faceless ticket in sight.  We can’t recommend them highly enough.  Happy days when we’re all working towards the same expectations and can trust our suppliers to deliver.

If you’d like any information about how we can help your business make more sales, please get in touch on 0121 347 6601 or email us We’d love to have a cuppa and see how we can help 🙂