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Gerry Weinberg & Associates, Inc. | Southfield, Michigan

Professional Sales Tactics

It was now 4:30 on Friday afternoon, and it was the last day of the month. Tim had been trying to close the sale for the past two hours. If he closed, he’d not only meet his monthly quota, but earn a bonus. Tim was under a lot of pressure.

Salespeople are not hired for their ability at mind reading. Unfortunately, when prospects make statements such as those directed to Nick, the common salesperson’s reaction is to agree with the prospect and hope the prospect keeps talking. And if there is nothing forthcoming from the prospect, the salesperson keeps the conversation going, not by asking what the prospect meant by some statement, but by filling in with more words.

Mr. Ross, a local antique dealer, stopped by John’s car dealership to look at cars. John had a great looking, previously owned SUV with low mileage and many attractive features that appealed to Mr. Ross.

Bob absolutely detests cold calling, and when he is in a sales slump, like he is this month, he’ll do just about anything to avoid the phone. He’ll update his CRM with all the new phone numbers that he can remember. Picking the lint off of his suit becomes a serious endeavor. Figuring out his commissions, should he make some sales beyond the normal price points, requires intense calculator work. Lunch time starts at around 10:40 AM.

The table in the conference room at the prospect’s office was the biggest one Tim had ever seen. A highly polished finish reflected even the muted lighting. Tim was prepared to present his solution to the ten people gathered there. Knowing it was going to be either his solution or the competitor’s, Tim had a presentation that would answer every last question. During the past week, Tim had done little else than prepare for this moment.

After making the best possible presentation and after spending most of the night before preparing an extensive written proposal, Tim waited with bated breath for the prospect to say “yes.” The silence in the office was broken only by the prospect leafing through the written proposal. Tim was tied in knots.