How to Close a Deal Like Warren Buffett: Lessons from the World's Greatest Dealmaker

How to Close a Deal Like Warren Buffett: Lessons from the World's Greatest Dealmaker

Posted by jack_miller | Published a year ago

With 40 ratings

By: Tom Searcy, Henry DeVries, et al.

Purchased At: $22.00

How to Close A Deal like Warren Buffett offers an original spin on Buffett’s near-mythic dealmaking prowess that will catch the attention of millions of Buffet fans worldwide. Here, Tom Searcy and Henry DeVries acknowledge leaders in sales and sales training and deconstruct the Buffett approach for dealmaking to give listeners a wealth of Warren wisdom to help close every deal.

Tom Searcy is the founder of Hunt Big Sales, a fast-growth consultancy and thought-leadership organization, where he’s helped Disney, 3M, Chase Bank, Apple, and hundreds of other clients land more than five billion dollars in new sales.

This is a book about the art of closing a large deal. The author has experience in this area. Before the age of 40 he "had headed four corporations, each of which [he] took from annual revenues of less than $15 million to more than $100 million." This book is an instruction manual for the business person that wants to grow their business exponentially.

This is for sales people, for executives, for CEO's, for entrepreneurs, and for innovators; everyone that wants to make their mark in business. That was the best takeaway for me - there are so many pieces of this process that I'll be able to use individually, outside of a specific deal, and I will be a more effective businessman as a result.

There are 18 Chapters or Lessons, that the author learned from tracking Warren Buffet, and I split those up into the steps toward winning a large deal. Those steps were:
1) Choosing your target - don't swing at everything
2) Craft a compelling solution that address the major concerns of Time, Money & Risk.
3) Speak the language of a dealmaker - don't speak like a manager to a CEO.
4) How to get an executive at a target prospect to call you back.
5) Building a team to engage your prospect effectively by predicting and addressing their concerns.
6) How to deal with the problems and people that will stand in your way.
7) How to close the sale AND secure the deal.

I was so impressed by the content of this book that I bought it for all my top customers. The first step in growing your territory is partnering with your clients to grow their business, and I'm confident this will make them stronger.

I identified one of the key takeaways from each of the chapters of the book. In order to fully understand them, it is best to read them in the context of the chapter, but these valuable nuggets are part of the treasure you'll find:

Gold Nugget 1: "Make deals with the kind of people you would like to be in business with."
Gold Nugget 2: "Developing a solution and a message that have an impact on the entire company, not just one department."
Gold Nugget 3: "Never go after the company, Always go after the deal."
Gold Nugget 4: In order for large companies to trust you, they want "safety and credibility."
Gold Nugget 5: "Big people with big problems don't buy little solutions."
Gold Nugget 6: "The big dealmakers want to hear about money, time and risk. These words are part of the language of big deals."
Gold Nugget 7: "What prospects do make deals on is what they can sell [internally] and defend later."
Gold Nugget 8: "Prospects for your next big deal expect you to have a relevant and valuable understanding of their problems so that you can discuss their general context immediately."
Gold Nugget 9: "You eliminate the fear by including on your team the people from your company who are best equipped to give in-depth answers to all the questions that are being raised."
Gold Nugget 10: "If you show any incompetence in your normal day-to-day dealings with your prospects, they will note trust you to be competent in carrying out your solution."
Gold Nugget 11: "Identify your known vulnerabilities."
Gold Nugget 12: "You must think in terms of what your prospects will value, rather than in terms of your product or service."
Gold Nugget 13: "Enrich your deal-making practice sessions further by adding one or more broken plays to the meetings you're practicing."
Gold Nugget 14: "You want to ask questions, but just like a good attorney, you have to know the answers before you ask the questions."
Gold Nugget 15: "As you receive these questions, you want to be helpful, thorough, and responsive. You also want to use this as a reconnaissance period for your own gathering of information."
Gold Nugget 16: "Your ability to make your prospect feel comfortable and unafraid about buying from you is what lands you the deal."
Gold Nugget 17: "The thoroughness of your solution in terms of how they get from here to there will determine whether they are willing to actually take the necessary steps to buy your proposal and move forward now."
Gold Nugget 18: "You now spend at least one-quarter to one-third of your time in research."

- lila_martinez

I have followed Tom since he published Whalehunting, and have found his selling advice to be pragmatic. The very best coaches take the complex and theoretical, and turn it into simple and real .... so it can be executed against. This is Tom's strength, and a natural fit with how Warren Buffett does deals. It is worth the money - if nothing else, the book caused me to stop and think....which I need to do more often.

- kobe_walker

Overall good book. Many quotes from the Warren Buffett's philosophy. In regards to deal making, some things are really from the Warren Buffett experience, others are from the author's. Good to read and have an idea about the how-tos of deal making.

- melina_thomas

I bought this book thinking it would have more insights into Warren Buffet's tactics for deal closing. Although it repeatedly quotes Warren Buffet's Ways (or famous statements he's made which are readily found on the internet) there is no indication the tactics described in the book are Warren Buffet's. They appear to be those of the authors.

I have a business of about 10 employees and was looking for some good tips but all the information is for companies probably in the range of 100 employees + and who are focused on mergers and acquisitions. If that's the size of your business I can see that this book would be valuable.

I came away from reading the book with very little new knowledge for myself as a small business owner.

- brendan_thomas

This book places you in the minds of the players from both sides of the deal-making table. The insight that Tom and Henry bring to this writing comes from decades of experience in understanding what is most important to each player. The reader should not be surprised that integrity is at the top of the list in all situations. The reader will also enjoy the many snippets from Mr. Buffets stockpile of comments from 60 years of buying companies.

- nova_moore

After buying this book based on glowing reviews, I find myself in a slight state of disbelief as to the genuineness of those reviews. I found precious little in this book that is useful, or related to Warren Buffett, or "deals" such as purchases of businesses.

This book was written by two business consultants and discusses things that have nothing to do with what Warren Buffett is known for. It gives Warren Buffett lip service, and then goes on in various directions that barely are related to Warren Buffett's investing and management style.

For example, it talks about selling personal services to big corporations, how to run brainstorming committees, team building, the list goes on and on. A lot of management and motivational buzzwords (such as "tiger teams", "murder boards", so on). None of that has much to do with Warren Buffett.

I feel that they used the name of Warren Buffett in order to sell a book that has precious little with the person whose name is on the title of this book.

In addition, I find the actual business advice to be shallow and unoriginal.

- haylee_ramos

This is one of those books you are better off reading while NOT traveling. Not only does it relate well to every business and business-mind, but it is quite funny and I found myself laughing out loud, much to the surprise of the people sitting next to me on planes and at airport.
This book is inspirational. If you are a life-long learner like me, this is a must-read for it will teach you about life, love and the pursuit of the big deal.

- vienna_foster

Product delivered as promised and arrived in good condition.

- mia_garcia

Good book overall. Very much more insightful towards the end of the book as it gives you the 'how' rather than just the 'what'.

- eva_reed

Great book to learn the methodology and approach to close sales opportunities.

You can apply his advice to either small or big business opps.

Overall, great book! Highly recommend it to anyone in Sales or owns a business.

- maliyah_sanders

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