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Restate the problem.


I was on a phone sales call with one of my reps with the purpose of closing a sale we were working on.  My rep started with thanking everyone for being there and then proceeded to ask the decision maker for their business.  At that point a lower level person who had done the evaluation our solution asked, “Did you get our support request resolved?”  Before my sales rep could answer the decision maker joined in with, “What support request?”  We spent the next 20 minutes answering and clarifying that support request question, along with other items that popped up because of the original question.  We ended up with the sale but we certainly did not have to take such a long route to get there.

When it’s time to present your solution or it’s time for the close, never jump in and start delivering your pitch.  You need to bring your prospect back to their state of mind when they first presented their business problem to you.

Try this approach - “Manfred, before I present our solution to you, can I take a few moments to review your business situation and how our company can lead you to success?” They will almost always say, of course.  This approach will do a few things for you:

1.      It makes sure that you are indeed addressing the correct problem.  Things can change quickly in business.

2.      If they add or change something from what you understood, you have time to adjust.

3.      At the end of your clarification, and if it is on track, your prospect will give you their first agreement.  The second one will be easier.

4.     They will see you as a consultant who has taken time to really understand their business and mold a solution to help them succeed.  It will build the all-important trust.


Sales Homework – Record yourself or role play summarizing one of your prospects business problems and how you can solve it with your product.

Sales Managers – Work on this process with your sales reps.  If the prospect thinks they are being rushed, they will back off.  Part of being a professional sales person is walking and talking with confidence and at a slow, controlled pace.



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