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TGIF&K - A live telephone seminar!

  • Strategic Planning for Salespeople – December 19

  • Tips From The Troops
    Real time management techniques from real salespeople.

    Tip: " Before you meet, fax your agenda. That way your customer will be prepared for the conversation you'll have with him or her."

    For more, see 10 Secrets of Time Management for Salespeople.

    We would love to share your tips! If you have a sales tactic, strategy or tip that you would like to share please forward it to: dave@davekahle.com.


    Quote of the Week

    "When you miss the sale, it is even more important to make a cheerful, friendly, optimistic, and curteous exit than it is when you make the sale."

      – Zig Ziglar

    Thought Provoking Articles

    Beliefs that limit a salesperson's performance:
    I have great relationships with my customers

    by Dave Kahle

    Copyright MMVIII

    "I have great relationships with my customers." That is one of the most debilitating myths around – one that cripples the performance of the average corporate salesperson. And, yet, it is endemic within the population of salespeople. I am not sure that there is a salesperson anywhere who doesn't, to some extent, believe it.

    For example, I have never yet had a salesperson come to me at the break of one of my seminars, and sheepishly confess that his customers really don't like him. It's never happened and probably never will.

    I have, on the other hand, heard senior sales executives, when discussing their sales force with me, allude to someone(s) whom they hired from a competitor because "they had such great relationships with their customers that they were going to bring their business with them." And, almost universally, it didn't quite happen that way. The salespeople, and their prospective employers, thought, erroneously, that the salesperson had great relationships with their customers. They subscribed to the myth.

    In recent years, I have come to see the belief that a salesperson has "great relationships" as something of a smoke–screen. It's used by the salesperson to obscure a deeper issue – their lack of sales expertise. As long as they believe that they have great relationships, then they don't need to be competent salespeople, because after all, their customers like them and will buy from them no matter how poorly executed are their sales competencies.

    Here's another problem. Salespeople who profess to have great relationships with their customers all too often limit the preponderance of their sales calls to those with whom they have these relationships. In other words, the existence of the perceived relationship dictates their strategic decisions – they go where it is easiest, and spend time with those whom they perceive like them.

    That, by itself, is OK, as far as it goes. The performance–hindering aspect comes in when they do that instead of going where it is smart, where there is greater potential. Thus, they allow their perception of the relationship to influence their strategic decisions. It ought to work the other way around. The potential of the customer should dictate where the salesperson builds relationships.

    The myth that they have great relationships with their customers, then, produces two major obstacles to sales success: it covers up the salesperson's lack of sales competencies, and it prevents them from working smart.

    The best salespeople make sound strategic decisions, prioritizing and targeting their accounts based on the potential, and then work at building positive business relationships with those important people. The best salespeople understand that just as important as the quality of the relationship is their ability to uncover the customer's needs and wants at deeper levels, to position their products and services as perfect matches to the customer's needs, to manage the project by gaining agreement at every step of the way, and to leverage those positive transactions to identify further opportunities. In other words, the best salespeople are good at selling, whereas the relationship–reliant salespeople are only good at getting along with those people who get along with them.

    There is a huge qualitative disparity here. The best salespeople also understand that a positive business relationship is, particularly in today's world of unrelenting change, a necessary piece of the entire sales puzzle. However, it is only a piece, necessary but not sufficient. It provides access to the key people, and perhaps the preference of the customer. It oils the gears of the transaction, and makes every step in the sales process work smoother. But only rarely does a customer buy solely because of the relationship with the salesperson.

    The product has to be adequate, the service reliable, the pricing acceptable. The company has to be able to stand up to its promises; the other employees of the company must be people of competence and integrity. There must be an infrastructure and organization behind the salesperson that supports his presentations, and completes his promises. It is because these other issues are, in sum, more important to the customer than the relationship with the salesperson that only the small minority of customers will follow a salesperson from one company to another.

    A positive business relationship, then, is a necessary but not sufficient means to an end. When complemented with effective sales competencies and implemented strategically, it can be a powerful asset to the salesperson.

    However, when salespeople use the belief that they have great relationships with their customers to excuse their lack of sales competencies and to derail them from strategically focusing on the highest potential customers, it becomes one of the most debilitating beliefs.

    Note from Dave Kahle

    This month we are introducing an entirely new set of resources.

    Perhaps you are one of that select group of salespeople who continually hunt for good ideas – forever searching for ways to improve your performance, do your job a little better, and improve your life.

    If so, then you'll want to join our new membership webs site. Effective today, we are introducing our Insiders Group of Sales Masters – a special set of resources for salespeople who want to become masters of their profession.

    You'll find this new site to be rich in resources to help you take your performance to higher levels, and available for a tiny monthly charge. For those of you who are serious about your personal and professional growth, you must consider this option.

    I am excited about bringing this to fruition. I've been working on them for almost a year, looking for some practical way to have a more intense interaction with those salespeople who dedicate themselves to personal improvement. This is it. If you are a salesperson, click here to learn more!

    Welcome aboard!

     

    Gain the Competitive Edge and Make Every Answer Count

    How can a salesperson gain better results from every sales call? By mastering the art of asking questions.

    A good question is the salesperson's single most powerful tool, one that can be powerfully used in every stage of the sales process, from making appointments to closing the sale to following up afterwards; yet, most salespeople are ill–equipped to use this powerful tool effectively. As a result, they find themselves dealing with "price" issues, and wondering why the customer purchased from someone else.

    Question Your Way to Sales Success will transform the way salespeople think and operate by offering specific, practical advice on how to ask "better sales questions." A powerfully asked question…

  • Is your primary tool for collecting deeper and more detailed information about your customer.
  • Can make your customer think about what you want him or her to think about.
  • Is an effective tool to create the perception of your competence in your customer's mind.
  • Is your primary tool for gaining agreement from your customer.
  • Learn how to use the techniques that separate the superstar salespeople from the mediocre. Every aspect of your sales process will become more effective as you understand:

  • The unrecognized, ultimate power behind a good sales question.
  • How to analyze the language in a question to make sure it serves your purposes.
  • How to create better sales questions with a foolproof, step–by–step process.
  • The subtle techniques that allow you to deliver a question more effectively than ever.
  • Kahle analyzes hundreds of real questions, developed by real salespeople, to provide you with practical and realistic information. Your sales strategy will never be the same again…and neither will your results!

    Click here to learn more.

    Content Copyright MMIIX 1998 - 2008 Dave Kahle & The DaCo Corporation

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