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Sandler Training | Dublin, Ireland

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Paul Lanigan

Inside salespeople who find themselves behind quota may assign their performance problems to any number of factors beyond their control: the economy, the competition, the weather. But the reality is that the single most common reason for this problem lies in something they do control: their choice to use, or not to use, a cookbook.

What happens the first time you try a new selling technique? It's usually uncomfortable and doesn't go as smoothly as it did in the seminar or how you imagined it would go. Often it results in a less than satisfying outcome. There are physiological reasons for this discomfort and awkwardness.

Reinforcing behavior that we actually want people to end is called enabling. The salesperson has several strategies s/he can employ to stop enabling prospects to abuse the selling relationship. Try these methods to get the respect you deserve as a selling professional:

Many salespeople believe that their particular industry doesn't encourage referrals and, as a result, don't ask. Typically, this myth evolves because people expect that referrals will just fall into their laps because they do a good job. When these referrals don't materialize, they assume that referrals are just not possible in their business.

Let me tell you a story about eight-year-old Nancy, a student in the public school system. One day during art class, Nancy painted a picture. Considering her age and development as a young artist, the picture of a house and the setting sun was really quite good. However, it was obvious that the picture was unbalanced. Nancy had painted the house and the sun to the left side of the canvas.

A good sales plan establishes goals, priorities, timetables, and necessary resources. A sales plan that will achieve your ends has these characteristics:

The selling profession is not generally considered a high-risk profession, yet salespeople face big risks every time they speak to customers and prospects. What do they risk? They risk uncovering the truth. They risk finding out their best customer has just changed the rules of doing business. They risk...

Professional selling can be cruel. Prospects are frequently better conditioned than the salespeople who call on them, and consequently they can destroy a salesperson in a phone call or during a chance meeting. On a day-to-day basis, even a good salesperson hears "no" more often than any word.

"Go for the NO"? Is "No" a good or bad word in Sales? I used to hate the idea of anyone saying "No" to me. How could that happen? I would spend too much time trying to analyze why it happened and why they did not buy from me. Then I learned to change my mindset.