Even Project Managers need to “Sell”

by Pamela A. Scott

We recently surveyed this group about how we can help you. A significant number of responses were along the lines of “help us sell” or “help us get new clients.” Today I will give you one take on the “help us sell” part.

The concept of “selling” was a huge hurdle for me, as it is for many people. It conjured up images of a sleazy used car salesman. It made me feel like I was forcing something on someone. Two thoughts helped me change my thinking and become successful at selling work.

First, I had to change my mind set. We’re all consultants, providing a service to our clients. The reality is that our clients need our service—they will tell you that much. For example, a developer can’t build his building if he doesn’t have a civil site plan. He can’t build his building if he doesn’t have a structural engineer. If he wants to be able to see in his building, he’s going to need an electrical engineer.

What services do your clients and potential clients need and want that you can provide?

The second piece of this is that the seller has to be passionate about the service he provides if he wants to sell business. This is where it gets tricky for some engineers. “We’re scientists,” one workshop participant told me. “We don’t feel things, we think.” I would not send that individual out to work with clients. Clients want relationships.

If you found these tips from Pam Scott of value and are a PMP looking to earn PMI PDUs, you might be interested in her self-paced, downloadable courses at PDUs2Go.com.


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