LOWER THOSE EXPECTATIONS
Ask a room of Sellers what their expectations are when they make cold-calls. How many of those calls do Sellers expect to “close” at some point? More than half will respond with “most” or “all.” I find this expectation wacky.
How can the mere fact that we show up at an office or a job-site lead to these expectations? I think we may be kidding ourselves. Or, trying to develop a false-sense of optimism to keep us motivated to make cold calls.
Why do we think this way? Perhaps, it’s all the motivational speakers and tapes out there. Those outlets dictate that we have to BELIEVE that we’ll get the business – and, therefore, we will. Otherwise, why make the call at all? Or, how can Sellers be Sellers without that belief? So much of this thinking is about being in a “good place” while making sales calls, about being “pumped.”
The reality is that these Buyers are doing business with someone else. They have formed relationships with them, are comfortable with the level of service being provided and pleased with the quality of the product. Why should they change just because we show up? How arrogant is it of us to assume that our mere presence will change that?
The higher our expectations are when making cold-calls, the more likely we are to do silly things, like….
Reducing margins unnecessarily.
Making promises that can’t be kept.
Positioning our Management to look like the “bad guys” in front of the client.
Spending time pursing what shouldn’t be pursued.
Many times I’ve seen Sellers “go rogue,” thinking they represent the Buyer. In order for good business to happen, both sides must benefit. We are frequently in the middle, having to negotiate with our Sales Management and the Buyer. But, our primary interest has to be the health of our employer. Providing “value” works both ways and what we bring to the Selling table is the definition of “Value Selling.”
Making effective cold-calls is incredibly difficult but keep your expectations realistic and you’ll never be disappointed.
By the way, when cold-calling I close about 2% of the accounts I touch, exactly what I expect. Much more importantly, I close more than 90% of the referrals I’m given!
What do you think?
Good Selling to you!
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