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9 Common Sins Salespeople Make

Sales is not a profession for the weak of heart, stomach or resolve. It's easy to get caught in the same traps that those who have preceeded you have encountered. Traps such as:

- They don't know what to say
- They want to impress
- They lack confidence
- They are not well prepared
- They feel pressured or desperate

2. THEY PRESUME INSTEAD OF ASKING QUESTIONS. How do you feel when someone finishes your question for you? Like the other person doesn't want to really listen to you? Like they're diminishing the value of your thoughts or feelings? Yet, too often sales people presume to know what the prospect is thinking or is about to say. Try to rephrase your response into a question, as simple as ... "So to be sure I understand, what you are saying is ________________ ... am I hearing you correctly?"

3. THEY ANSWER UNASKED QUESTIONS. Remember, a confused mind says "No." One way of confusing a prosective customer or client is to toss out a bunch of stuff that they don't really want or need to know.

4. THEY MAKE TOO MANY FOLLOW UP CALLS WHEN THE SALE IS DEAD. Nothing says "amateur" more than calling over and over to follow up. That's seen as desperation. And desperation equals death to a sale. Never call to see if they've thought about it ... call to set an appointment. If they've decided not to buy or lost interest, they'll tell you.

5. THEY FAIL TO GET A COMMITMENT BEFORE CLOSING THE SALE. Use tie-downs (statements or questions requiring the prospect's response or affirmation) to measure their commitment level.

6. THEY CHAT AND AVOID STARTING THE SALE. While it's great to like people and to value relationship-building, there comes a point where you have to ask for the sale. Unless you can figure out how to live off of being a professional visitor. Too often it's due to not knowing the sales process thoroughly, fear of rejection or a lack of self confidence ... all which are trainable and fixable.

7. THEY WOULD RATHER HEAR "I'D LIKE TO THINK IT OVER" THAN "NO." That's usually due to not knowing how to overcome objections. When a sales person realizes that the sale doesn't start until the prospect objects (usually) and desires to master the art of overcoming objections, the whole sales thing changes ... for the good!

8. THEY SEE THEMSELVES AS BEGGARS INSTEAD OF DOCTORS. One of the biggest skills a successful salesperson must develop is that of diagnosis.

9. THEY WORK WITHOUT A SYSTEMATIC APPROACH TO SELLING. That means allowing the prospect to lead. It's not what you say, but how and when you say it.

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About the Author

John Patrick, The M David Katz Company
2401 W. Morrison Ave., #122
Tampa, FL 33629

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