H is for Hopefulness
A sucky salesperson hopes for the best and doesn’t anticipate bad stuff.
He has his head stuck firmly in the sand (or elsewhere). He expects problems to resolve themselves and tunes out bad news or clear statements of disinterest from prospects he secretly fears might not buy his stuff.
He doesn’t listen to what his prospect is saying. He HOPES things will work out. He is delusional.
“When are you closing this deal?” his boss asks him.
“This week, I hope,” he replies.
Hope doesn’t cut it. You can’t build a business (or a relationship) on wishful thinking.
You’ve got to anticipate problems and weed them out before they become shitstorms. If you’ve got your head firmly in the sand, oblivious to the real world, the real world will bite you in the ass.
O is for Overwhelm
A sucky salesperson gets easily overwhelmed. A sucky salesperson looks at the number of calls to make and deals to close and pitches to produce as an obstacle rather than an opportunity.
A stellar salesperson knows that each pitch that’s rejected is one pitch closer to a sale.
The AMOUNT of stuff a great salesperson needs to do to hit his targets is a motivator. For a mediocre, sucky salesman, it’s an excuse.
R is for Reluctancy
And so a sucky salesperson is reluctant. He’s afraid that he’s going to hear “no” and that informs how frequently he’ll ask an important question. He’s afraid of changing the nature of his relationship with the prospect as soon as he invites the prospect to become a buyer.
A sucky salesperson doesn’t believe in his product. If he did, he wouldn’t be reluctant to ask people to buy it, right?
I mean, why WOULDN’T you ask for the sale unless you weren’t sure it was any good?
R is for Randomness
A sucky salesperson has no system. He’ll hang out with his peers and wonder where his buyers are.
He’ll go to networking events where everybody’s trying to pitch each other and wonder why nobody wants to listen to what he has to say.
He won’t fish where the fish are. Instead, he’ll randomly talk about his offer to the wrong people, and come up with excuses for why they’re not interested.
“My market doesn’t have that kind of money.”
“My market isn’t interested in this.”
“My market is different.”
A stellar salesperson has a system. He finds hungry people and sells them hot dogs. He doesn’t hang out with hot-dog vendors, chewing the fat and shooting the shit.
I is for Inactivity
“Build it and they will come” says the sucky salesperson.
“I’ve got to get out there and herd their asses into my funnel” says the sales superstar.
A sucky salesperson says “I’ve done all I can do today. I’m off for a beer.”
A stellar salesperson doesn’t sleep.
A sucky salesperson lies when their boss asks them how many sales conversations they have had this week. They’re ashamed.
A stellar salesperson has no time for shame.
B is for Busy-ness
A sucky salesperson is perpetually busy: tweaking their order-books, analysing their stats, fucking about with their website. They’re so busy creating and fine-tuning and refining their product they don’t have the time to sell it.
A stellar salesperson doesn’t have the time to be busy.
L is for Laxity
Or Loudmouthedness, or Looseness.
A sucky salesperson strays off topic. Not in the artful manner of Ricky Roma (who swoops in for the kill once his prey is befuddled and entranced) but in a way that stops deals dead.
Get tight. Get focused. Get sharp. Know WHY you’re saying what you’re saying and quit scratching backs and getting fluffed.
Everything you do as a stellar salesperson is for a reason. Every word an economy. Every action related to a goal.
Or you can join the ranks of the sucky sellers and just fuck around.
E is for Ego-driven
And finally, of course, a sucky salesperson thinks it’s all about them. It’s not.
Check your ego at the door. Stand in the service of others. Sell something you’re proud of. Ignore rejection.
Sell sell sell.