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    « Different Strokes for Different Folks | Main | Thank You IRgA Staff »

    May 08, 2006

    Moving from Transactional to Consultative

    When engaged in a conversation with a reprographer about consultative versus transactional business models, most agree that they are mostly transactional, but want to move towards a consultative model. This is a very hard thing to accomplish. It is important to note that the world needs transactional models and those models can be very profitable. Everybody purchases commodity goods. There are many purchases, where as consumers, we don’t want to be consulted with.  There is demand and there are many companies that are very successful in this model. Exxon for example (not just because of gouging). If I buy gas, I don’t want a gas station attendant to tell me how he can help me improve my gas mileage. I want to buy the gas and move on. There is money to be made in transactional selling, but it is a much more cut throat and price sensitive business. Consultative models if executed correctly are more predictable and thus more sustainable.

    The key to moving out of a transactional model into a consultative model is to execute both models concurrently. If your business is transactional today you can’t change it into a consultative model over night. It is your transactional business that pays the bills. But per Neil Rackham’s conclusions you can’t have the same people working in both models. This means there will have to be an investment to move towards a consultative model. You need different people. You need different ways of measuring the business. It will take time to grow! Where do you get the money to invest in this? From a more profitable and cash flow positive transactional model!!!

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