Ask Questions vs. Just Answer Them

For sales professionals, everywhere.

When I roleplay/practice with salespeople and play the part of the salesperson as a way of demonstrating the behavior I want them to follow, I am very conscious of my intention and behavior in the interaction: I am focused on what they are saying, use voice and body match, listen deeply and reframe their words and recreate their emotion, and ask more questions in response to what they say. These are all teachable actions and they all require repeated practice.
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The last one – ask more questions in response to what they say – is a critical skill to adopt and repeat. When I observe salespeople in role play or on the floor, I see that they TELL the customer something in response to what they say instead of telling and asking another question.
For example:
Customer: “Is this solid wood?”
Salesperson: “Yes it is.” ADD” Can you tell me what’s important to you about solid wood?”
I also find this step is lacking when discussing money. Example:
Customer: “Is $1500 the price for this sofa?”
Salesperson: “Yes.” ADD: “Will that price work for you?”
Know what you need to know and ask until you get it…including Asking for the Sale.
Now, go sell something.
oxo,
Jody
Jody Smiling Photo copy
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“Helpful” is Not an Outcome

For sales professionals, everywhere
 
I had a great call today with the sales leadership of Interiors Home in PA. We have been working together for a couple of years and discussing how to break some habits and create new, more effective ones. One of the actions we were discussing I have mentioned Handshakebefore: Sales managers interrupting sales/customer interactions on the sales floor to help the salesperson to overcome concerns and to help them to close the sale (or get the appointment).
Today we distinguished HOW to engage. Instead of the sales manager introducing themselves to be ‘helpful’ to the customer and to the salesperson, it’s better to “Actively and Intentionally Engage” with the outcome being the sale or the appointment. And to take the opportunity to demonstrate the selling skill needed (new questions, more powerful presentation, overcome sticky objections, or ask for the commitment!) that the salesperson may have missed or performed poorly. It’s a BIG difference from just being helpful.
As I said to them, for the sales manager, Intentionally Engaging to Produce an Outcome is an equivalent of what sketching the rooms is for the salesperson: High-level tools that satisfy multiple objectives.
Sit with this for awhile…then give me a call and let’s discuss. 877-663-9663.
Now, go sell something.
oxo,
Jody
Jody Smiling Photo copy

You Won’t Win Them All

For sales professionals, everywhere   And you don’t have to win them all. You want to win them all, will do your best to win them all, and sometimes obstacles will arise that will prevent that from happening. There is … Continue reading