What Would You Do – I Can’t Get to the CEO?

This week’s What Would You Do Wednesday is about getting to the decision maker.

I often see deals lost because the right people weren’t engaged.  Getting to the appropriate decision makers is key. Whether selling bottom up or top down, knowing who to talk to, and being able to get in front of them is critical. Getting to the right people, those who influence the decisions, takes a lot of work. I think that’s why many sales people aren’t successful.  It’s too hard and therefore they avoid it.

Jill has been working with the V.P. of Marketing of a mid-size manufacturer. She’s been trying to gain traction with him and has had little success.  A friend, familiar with the manufacturer, recently told her the CEO was a bit of control freak and that she made most of the decisions. She told Jill that getting to CEO was the best way to get the deal moving.

Jill took her advice and has been calling CEO regularly for the past few months to no avail. Jill has been unable to get through. She has left countless messages with her admin. As a matter of fact, when Jill calls, the admin apologizes on behalf of the CEO for not getting back with her and says she will deliver the message again. Having built a rapport with the admin, Jill asked for her help. The admin agreed and after talking with the CEO informed Jill that CEO said she would get back with her.  Three weeks have passed and Jill has yet to hear from anyone.

This account has the potential to be a good account. It fits her key customer profile very well.

Jill is frustrated, she wants this account.  She has tried everything but can’t get through.  Jill doesn’t believe in gimmicks and doesn’t want to be cheesy. She’s at a loss and needs to come up with something. She needs to crack this nut.

What should Jill do to get in front of the CEO?  What would you do if you were Jill?  How would you get in front of the CEO.

Looking forward to your answers.