Coffee’s For Closers
Anyone that has been in the sales field has probably heard the lines from David Mamet’s 1984 Pulitzer Prize winning play and movie, Glengarry Glen Ross:
“We’re adding a little something to this month’s sales contest. As you all know, first prize is a Cadillac Eldorado. Anybody want to see second prize? Second prize is a set of steak knives. Third prize is you’re fired.”
Coming out of 2008 to 2009, the pressure of taking third prize was in many of our minds but the sales process never really changed. It is still about relationships and as John Klymshyn who wrote the book How to Sell Without Being a Jerk stated, moving conversations forward.
He believes that if you have spoken to a prospect at least one time before, there is a basic three-step outline to prepare and follow on your next contact to move the conversation forward.
- Review the past.
- Discuss their present.
- Plan the future together.
One, review the past to bring the person you are calling into the frame of mind that returns him or her to your previous conversation. (Also, ask questions. He believes the first person to ask three questions in a row takes control of the conversation. (Not yes/no questions though.)
For number two, simply ask them about their upcoming project or what has changed since the last conversation.
To plan for the future together again, ask questions. “What would you like to see happen next?” “What is our next step?” “Where do we go from here?”
Moving conversations forward takes time, preparation and one very important habit; and that is listen 80% of the time and respond 20%. Easier said than done when you want to tell a prospect all about your company and what it offers.
We all know a sale takes time – months or sometimes years to develop. Now …
“Put. That coffee. Down. Coffee’s for closers only.”