For Sales Professionals Everywhere
It’s no secret that the content of my blogs comes from my conversations and experiences with people, especially those people who make a living selling to and serving others. Today was no different. Susie Oberrieder, an excellent salesperson at Furniture Mall of Kansas, and I were discussing her performance and where she is getting stuck or believes there is more to the sale than she is getting. One of the things that makes her so good is her ability to examine interactions without being defensive; to look at her actions and those of the buyer to see where the breakdowns occur.
She sells premium bedding ($8500 is not uncommon for a mattress and boxspring) and she was looking for where to go when someone LOVES what they are laying on and yet just can’t make that size investment. Because Susie is an ‘Influencer’ (DiSC) and is committed to producing a result, her natural reaction in the face of an objection is to attempt to convince – “You deserve this”, “Don’t you really want a good nights sleep?” or some other such thing, and the buyer feels it and retreats.
What we distinguished and role-played was easing back, asking more questions about their concerns and then (and only then) directing a conversation to discover options before providing solutions. In short, bringing patience and generosity to the interaction instead of trying to make it go the way she wanted it to go.
We managed the ‘can’t afford it’ and ‘don’t want to settle’ objections and after we finished the discussion and role play, I asked her what she got from it and she said “Expand the Answer”….learn more about their challenges and concerns and just ‘be with’ them, as they share fears, resistance, and whatever else keeps them from moving forward. Just be with it. And then ask more questions about what would happen if: they did nothing, selected something else, explored a way to get what they wanted and expand that answer to an option or solution. This is EXACTLY the point that lesser salespeople give up and then MAKE something up about the buyer, instead of exploring what else THEY could bring that would have the seller and the buyer win.
Brava, Susie, and all the other sales professionals who are committed to doing and being their best, and the self discovery and new actions it takes to do that.
Please, bring your questions and challenges to me and this venue. I’d love to help you.
Now, go sell something.