Sales and the Art of Private Investigation

Written by Leroy Cook

Sales andrepparttar Art of Private Investigation


A high pressure salesman is exemplified byrepparttar 119303 salesman who sold two milking machines to a farmer with only one cow and tookrepparttar 119304 cow in payment forrepparttar 119305 machines. Sales, like any other powerful tool, can be misused. The necessity of marketing and selling your services though, is acknowledged by anyone in business exceptrepparttar 119306 extremely stubborn andrepparttar 119307 foolish. Being in any business without selling is like trying to clap with one hand. Ironically, some very good private investigators who feel "sales" is below their dignity are unwittingly practicing sales daily while doing investigations. The same skills and tools are used by sales professionals everyone admires andrepparttar 119308 high pressure salesmen none of us wants to be identified with. These skills are also used by professional private investigators and by slick con artists. Some people seem to have natural sales and or investigation abilities but,repparttar 119309 skills separatingrepparttar 119310 professionals in both fields fromrepparttar 119311 rest must be studied, learned and practiced.

When I went to work withrepparttar 119312 General Adjustment Bureau many years ago, I was taught, how to read and interpret an insurance policy. Overrepparttar 119313 next eight years, through continuous courses and onrepparttar 119314 job training, I learned about taking statements, photography, casualty law,repparttar 119315 rules of evidence and many other areas of knowledge that have served me well. During my 8 1/2 years as an adjuster and manager, I was taught nothing about sales. Selling was believed to be something done only byrepparttar 119316 agents. Most people who work in law enforcement are probably also taught many technical things and very little about sales. A badge can effectively eliminaterepparttar 119317 need for salesmanship. Police officers who develop and use good salesmanship in police work findrepparttar 119318 transition to private investigation much easier than those who relied solely on their authority.

Only after leaving adjusting with a well earned ulcer and going to work for Field Enterprises did I learn what I had been missing that had contributed torepparttar 119319 ulcer. During my three years with Field Enterprises Education Corporation, I first sold door to door and then trained and coached others to sell door to door. What an education. After "graduating" from Field Enterprises, I started my own investigation agency and enjoyed eleven years of business success. I attribute my success as a private investigator more to my sales training than torepparttar 119320 technical training I received as an adjuster.

Yes, I prospected for potential clients and I gave sales presentations to some ofrepparttar 119321 ones I successfully contacted but that isn'trepparttar 119322 way my sales knowledge helped me most inrepparttar 119323 PI business. It made me a more effective investigator.

Let's talk about using sales tools in investigation. When you work a case and need to find a piece of information, you turn over every stone, right? If you don't, what arerepparttar 119324 clients paying you for? Turning over every stone is another way of describing "prospecting", an essential sales tool. When you make contact with an important witness or keeper of records, you must gain their cooperation to getrepparttar 119325 information you need. You must sell yourself or makingrepparttar 119326 contact doesn't do anyone any good.. When you take a statement, you needrepparttar 119327 subjects signature on it to prove you didn't makerepparttar 119328 information up. That requires a process called "closing" inrepparttar 119329 sales world. Whether you use them while investigating or while getting more work, sales skills are worth learning. Here are a few examples.

The next time you need to get into a building past someone standing inrepparttar 119330 doorway, try wiping your feet as you say: "May I step in?" You might be amazed atrepparttar 119331 power of kinesics. The next time you secure a statement from a reluctant witness and need a signature, try leavingrepparttar 119332 whole bottom line empty and instead of saying: "Sign here." Say: "Which side ofrepparttar 119333 page do you prefer to sign on,repparttar 119334 left side orrepparttar 119335 right?" and hand themrepparttar 119336 pen withrepparttar 119337 paper in a comfortable position for them to sign. Many people resist following instructions (Sign here!) when they still aren't sure you are both onrepparttar 119338 same side and many more have a terrible time making decisions. ("Gee! Should I sign this?") Everyone makes many choices daily so choices are easy and comfortable for them. (Left side or right?) Handingrepparttar 119339 pen and positioningrepparttar 119340 paper is another use of kinesics.

Making Your Business Legal

Written by Brett Krkosska

It's important that your business be onrepparttar "up-and-up" right fromrepparttar 119302 start. Taking care ofrepparttar 119303 legal issues associated with starting a new business will keep you out of hot water inrepparttar 119304 future.

Here arerepparttar 119305 first steps you need to take:

1. Register Your Business Name

Your business name must be registered if it is something other than your full legal name. This is a way of informingrepparttar 119306 public that you will be doing business as (DBA) an assumed, or "fictitious" name. Generally, a search is done to ensure your name is not already in use, and an application is submitted to make it official. Some states require a notice be published inrepparttar 119307 local newspaper. The details of registering varies from state to state, so check with your state office or county clerk for specifics.

2. License Your Business

Licensing of your business depends onrepparttar 119308 type of business you plan to start. Licensing occurs onrepparttar 119309 state and/or local level. Federal licensing is only necessary for businesses who engage in specific, controlled activities (things such as making firearms, alcohol, tobacco, etc.). Many cities, but not all, require a general business license, plus there may be a license required for your particular business type. You should contact your state and city clerk offices to find out what licenses you need.

3. Report Income Tax

You are responsible for filing and paying income taxes on your business. Assuming your business is a sole proprietorship, you will pay income tax on your net profits. You report your income tax using Form 1040 at tax time, withrepparttar 119310 additional requirement of filing Schedule C or C-EZ: Profit or Loss From Business. You can get IRS Publication 334 (Tax Guide for Small Business) for more information. Visitrepparttar 119311 IRS online at for publications and detailed filing requirements.

4. Pay Estimated Taxes

If you expect to owe more than $1,000 in federal taxes, you need to make estimated payments quarterly. This may seem like a burden at first, but it actually protects you from having a big payment due at tax time. You can learn more about this from IRS Publication 505: Estimated Tax Payments.

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