Obstacle or Vehicle?

For sales professionals, everywhere. When evaluating a sales interaction with a customer, ask yourself: Am I paving the way for them to make a decision or am I IN the way of a decision happening? I observe salespeople inadvertently blocking … Continue reading

Make the Simple Sound Simple

For sales professionals, everywhere.
 
I have the good fortune of working with several tile showrooms. The process of buying and selling hard surfaces is a bit different from selling furniture and lighting, but not that different. They are still retail sales interactions and sales interactions involving designers or contractors…so more similar than different.
As happens in lighting, the more complicated the product, the more complicated the salespeople are apt to make the interaction and conversation – thinking they need to talk simpleon and on about the product, either to try to communicate its value at that price or to establish confidence with the buyer. In both cases, talking too much is just talking too much.
What occurred to me in a call last week was how salespeople can make simple sound simple. Let’s say the retail customer came in looking for tile for a backsplash. A single product and a permanent application, so the stakes might seem high, but they really aren’t. The salesperson could say something at the outset of the conversation, like: “Thanks for considering us…we do these projects every day..they are pretty simple and here’s what tends to happen. Do you have a measurement of the space and a sample of the countertop?” (if yes, great, continue. If no, say, “Good…we will find a couple of tiles you like and make this work”). To continue with HOW the process works: “Today, we will select a couple of tiles that you like, you will take them home and see how they look in the morning and at night and with your countertop, and before you leave we will schedule a time for you to come back. You will be able to confirm the measurements and which tile you prefer. When you come back, we can place the order. It’s simple and we like to keep it that way.”
Will this work exactly like this every time? No. Does it need to? No. What it will do is keep the simple simple…and not complicate what is not a complicated process. Try it and let me know what happens.
(And yes, I know that the salesperson can also sketch the space and change the countertop and the floor tile…that’s for another blog. 😉)
Now, go sell something.
oxo,
Jody
Jody Smiling Photo copy

Coaching Attitude

For sales managers, everywhere
As sales managers, all you can really coach is performance – which means actions. Actions past, present and future.

Action
Actions are the only thing that produce results. You can’t coach numbers, results, statistics…you can only use those to coach and support actions taken or not taken. And you surely can’t coach attitude…because when you do, you usually get MORE of it.
What you CAN coach that addresses attitude, however, are the actions associated with it.
Take a look – when you coach, WHAT are you coaching? Is it really a training issue (they don’t know HOW to do something) or a coaching issue (they are attempting the action and doing it poorly or inconsistently)? Are they really ‘lazy’ or do they not have a clear idea of the up system or are they not structured to manage actions in time?
Check in and if you need some assistance with this, give me a call.
Now, go help your team to sell something.
oxo,
Jody
Jody Smiling Photo copy