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Listening is a Good Thing!

Have you ever had one of those annoying sales people who just talks and talks? They anticipate what you are going to say and cut you off halfway through your question! When you are trying to "get a word in" they talk louder because they have something REALLY important that they want to tell you!

As a sales person/business owner it's really good to run into these people every now and then. It's a GREAT reminder of what NOT to do in a sales call!

How many sales people have heard of The Golden Silence? It can be pretty hard for "type A", extrovert sales people to shut up ... but it is CRITICAL that they do. Practice saying your piece, succinctly, and then shut up so that your prospect can ponder and ask questions.

If you are talking for 50% of the time in a sales call then you are talking WAY TOO MUCH! Many sales people (maybe most?) talk for 75% to 85% of any sales call ... how can you ever understand your client's needs and issues if you are talking? I would suggest that the maximum amount of time that you, as a sales person, should be talking in a sales call is 35% of the time. Your goal is to gather information that will allow you to understand the opportunity ... without that information you are doing a "product dump".

The situation I found myself in a couple of weeks ago involved a product demonstration. Clearly this is a little different than a regular sales call because the sales person needs to explain their product. However ... they must always be ready to LISTEN, to stop mid sentence if necessary, and to go at their client's pace. Dumping a whole bunch of information without giving a client every opportunity to ask questions is a great way to lose a sale.

PS. They lost the sale!