Good Salespeople vs Bad Ones - By Don Farrell

Say the word salesperson to most anyone and what kind of a reaction do you usually get? Yeah, not good. Ask them to paint a picture of the 'typical' salesperson with words and it ain't pretty either. Lastly, ask someone who sells for a living what their title is and it is almost never 'salesperson'.

Fresh Revenues Instead you get '..I am the Midwest Senior in Charge of Important Programs Sales Czar..' Even salespeople are ashamed of their salesman, saleswoman, salesperson titles...they find that they have to have more adjectives tied to their sales title to give it more credibility.

So what things do bad salespeople do to get this bad rap? Here are a few of my least favorite traits:

1. They don't really care about the consumer/client..they care more about their American Express

2. They care more about their sales quotas than they care about the financial well-being of their employer. This is how bad business is booked and the people who establish these quotas need to fix this

3. They focus too much attention on the product or service they are selling and not enough on the skills needed to be the best salesperson in the market

4. They focus too much attention on the product or service they are selling and not enough on the real needs and wants of the potential and existing client

5. They take for granted their 'regulars'


6. They don't try to improve each and every day

7. They don't follow up sooner than they said they would

8. They don't meet with their clients right after they have just used their product or service to find out how they can be better

9. They don't try to help others (namely every single employee) in the office to be better salespeople

10. They are not honest with themselves when they fail to make a sale and conduct an autopsy on their actions. Maybe there was something they could have said or done to make it a better outcome and therefore sell smarter the next time

As the owner of the world's best and biggest sales and service training company we made over 20,000 shop calls each and every month to employees who were supposed to be selling at a high level. Without the right training, focus and culture here is a typical sounding shop call..and again, we have listened to hundreds of thousands of them. Let me set the stage for you:

If you are married (remember back to that day), about to be married, or see yourself getting married someday...and you are the person trying to secure wedding reception space, then you are more than likely the bride to be. This is going to be one of the most cherished and memorable events that will ever happen in your life. It is supposed to happen only once in your life, so you want it to be perfect in every way. You have three places that in mind that would be in the running for your reception, so you call them all up and are wanting to get preliminary information. From here you will be looking for a face to face meeting to determine who gets to have the privilege of hosting your once in a lifetime celebration. You call up the first place, second place and finally the third place and you are greeted warmly. That is immediately followed up with tactical questions relating to Dates, Space, Rates.

Dates. Space. Rates.
That's what the reception place wants to talk with you about. Why? Because they have done so many wedding receptions, meetings, banquets and so on that they become more like the robotic conveyer belt at an automobile factory than the 'trustee and true beneficiary of someone's most cherished lunch or dinner'. It may be the last time all 4 of your generations will ever be together. It is the first time Aunts and Uncles have seen each other in a dozen years. It is the first and maybe last time both families will come together as one. And the banquet facility wants to focus on dates, space and rates. And when you tell them that you are calling two more places they tell you that they hope you call them back...see ya. Because they all sound the same our bride to be thinks that this is the way this is supposed to go..until she hears someone who is heads and shoulders above the rest.

I used a wedding scenario here but the same holds true for a single hotel room reservation to a business meeting...to a florist to a dentist. Great salespeople will love every opportunity to separate themselves from the rest of their competition by being better than their competition in the caring department, the appreciation department and the loyalty building department. Great salespeople would congratulate this bride to be on her upcoming wedding and then ask her about how she has dreamt that this day would stand out in everyone's mind as the greatest of any and all events ever held. The great salesperson will communicate expert advice on the best practices learned by hosting over 150 wedding receptions. The great salesperson knows that the dates, space and rates are important details..but take a back seat to the emotional connection that is needed to get a caller to come in for a site visit and from a site visit to an actual confirmed reception. And how many more receptions, meetings and other business dealings were just opened up to the audience that attended the reception of hers and his dreams? Nothing happens until somebody sells something. The world is starving for this..even and especially in a recession.

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