Let’s cut to the chase. Business development is about pulling together everything ready to make a sale. It can include the transaction at the end, but it doesn’t have to.
If you keep hiring salespeople to do business development, then you'll make some sales, but you are missing out on what your company needs to grow.
When a business development person starts a job, they ask,
- what is our strategy for growth,
- what budget and implementation plan do we have,
- who do I talk to about the marketing strategy and digital presence,
- who do I talk to about increasing the marketing budget,
- please introduce me to the CFO so we can get started on pricing,
- please introduce me to Legal so we can review and develop our contracts,
- how do you feel about alliances and/or acquisitions,
- have you tried these market segments,
- what channel partners do we have for sales and referrals
- do the senior management take their role in relationship development seriously
- do our people have enough product knowledge and pride in the company to recommend us to people,
- what does the Board think, and,
- do we have existing customers I can include in our market sounding for the product line.
Do you get the picture?
Sales is about the transaction.
Business development is about developing the business ready to make sales.
Post by Eris O'Brien - Principal Trainer at BizDevEssentials and Managing Director of Lazuli Consulting