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Trustpointe, Inc. | Indianapolis, IN

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by Tim Roberts

The traditional salesperson can be all over the place.  He can be found blind quoting, margin avoiding, candy spilling, appointment begging and glad handing all in a single afternoon.  He can be a refreshing whirlwind through the office on a good day and a thick, dark cloud on others.  He is capable of taking your business plan to the Promised Land or holding it hostage in head-trashville.

The trusted advisor on the other hand takes the role of salesperson to an advanced level.  The trusted advisor, especially one who is a professional service provider with an intangible offering, possesses all the baseline skills of a salesperson: goal orientation, curiosity, ego drive, credibility and reliability. Yet, he also knows the power of low self-orientation.  He is able to get rid of his own ego state and be fully attuned to the client. The trusted advisor can read the situation accurately.

Perhaps the most telling characteristic of a trusted advisor, however, is a powerful phrase I heard describe a judge at her investiture: "equal poise and constancy."  A trusted advisor’s distinction is clarity and his primary offering is original, sound advice that goes well beyond subject matter.  Equal poise and constancy means that a trusted advisor possesses both equilibrium in dealing with tough situations (poise) and an unwavering commitment to the process (constancy). It’s a skill that brings meaning to the word relationship.

Equal poise and constancy reflects talent earned through consistent honing of that skill and application of knowledge in a way that makes insight less threatening to clients.  Mountains remain the molehills they began as.  Troubled minds are held at bay.  Need-to-do’s get done and nice-to-do’s are advanced.  Creativity and abundance own the stage.

You can feel poise and constancy when it walks into a room.  The traditional salesperson moves quickly to honor the allotted 15-minute lobby visit, pressuring hard with outdated moves and never-earned trust.  However, poise and constancy set the tone, agenda and outcome for the trusted advisor.  The right to offer a service, solution or advice is earned, nurtured by an appropriate amount of time and curiosity.

Traditional salespeople mean well, they really do.  A zigzagging business climate and pressure from ownership, partners or unskilled sales managers tethers them to mediocrity.  An advanced salesperson, the trusted advisor, eschews mediocrity.  A highly trained and well-disciplined approach keeps the trusted advisor cool under fire--and welcomed wherever he goes.

If you’d like to find out more about being a trusted advisor, contact Tim Roberts at Sandler Training, Trustpointe, at or 317-845-0041

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