You can’t manage the number of sales you’re going to make but you can manage the behaviour that will help you achieve those sales. Obviously, you can’t predict who will buy and who won’t because only the prospect knows if they really want the product/ service/ solution you are selling, if they have the budget and if they can make the decision to move forward. Those are all things outside of our control.
What is in our control is strategically developing a plan based on the number of calls we need to make, crafting questions that qualify the prospect for need, budget and decision as well as disqualifying those prospects who won’t or aren’t ready to move forward. In our heart of hearts, we often know that a particular prospect will not move forward with us but our ‘need of approval’ gets and the way and we continue the journey with them so we don’t need to face the awkwardness of the situation. We may kid ourselves into doing this to keep the relationship.
It may be that this is the wrong timing for the prospect. We need to ask the questions and uncover if there is a better time to approach the topic. If we keep the prospect comfortable and allow them to tell us ‘NO’ if it’s simply not right for them we are dealing with the situation in a far more professional way and the prospect will be okay to engage with you again when they have a further need. Ask yourself; have you ever given off signals verbally, in your tone or your body language when you were really hoping the prospect was going to buy with you then they did not? If we learn to understand that prospects buy for their reasons and not ours, we operate much better. Furthermore, the prospect may never deal with you again for fear of your same reaction. Wouldn’t you rather work with your prospect as a ‘Trusted Advisor’ to continue business long into the future?
Controlling your behaviour is about doing the things that will result in gaining business. It’s about taking control of where and with whom you spend your time. It’s about developing a plan and following it. It’s about being part of your plan rather than somebody else’s plan.
An example of a behaviours plan will be highlighted next time.
Berkeley Harris — Consultant & Trainer