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communication

Guardrails #1

In the very simplest of terms, as a sales professional, our job is to make it easy for our customers/clients to say yes… and to buy from us. 
To do that, we need to truly be responsible for the entire sales interaction and how it goes, and where it ends up.
Guardrails help that. 

By guardrails, I mean guiding the conversation so that it doesn’t veer off course and stays in the lane for the intended outcome. Guardrails include asking questions that will direct the discussion and get the answer…

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Practice – the resistance

There are times when I am writing or teaching or coaching that I need to check my “Imposter Syndrome.” Maybe it’s the syndrome or maybe it’s that I really don’t do what I am preaching at the level that my communication would indicate.

That’s how it is for me with practice. I must recognize my resistance and manage it, which includes accepting it as part of MY process of practice. Even when I want something, my ego will resist the actions needed to achieve what I want. And it’s sneaky.

I s…

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Asking for the Commitment…are you asking enough?

Here’s a question…when you KNOW that the solution you presented is spot on, and the customer agrees…and yet they have a question or a concern – which you overcome, do you then ask for the sale?
And if they hesitate or say: ‘I want to think about it,’ do you manage it and ask for the sale again?
And if the sale is not forthcoming, do you ask for and get an appointment – to ask for the sale again?

Okay, this might seem like waaaayyyyy too much for you. You may call it too aggressive. Too inse…

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Handling Objections…what is enough?

Let’s extend developing our questioning skills to include handling objections.
As we evaluate our relationship to objections, it’s important to look at the reaction to objections and the response to the objection. They are separate yet related actions.

Ask yourself: Do I really know what they are concerned about…or am I assuming I know? Do I accept their concern as valid – and maybe even agree with them? Do I understand their concern, and do I have a response to address it and move beyond i…

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Connecting…enough?

I have been bumping up against the word ‘enough’ for a while now so I figured that there was a message for me to pay attention to!
Whether it’s gratitude for having enough or acknowledgment for being enough, I thought it might be time to take a look at where else 'enough' matters.

This year I modified the objective of Step 2 of “Sell it or Schedule it” - the step of Connecting and Building Rapport. I adjusted the objective of this step to be "To help the customer to be comfortable enough fo…

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Asking Summarizing Questions

Summarizing is a questioning step to see if we are accurate, in alignment, and on track. It’s a good step when the conversation is going on too long, is getting confusing (or going into areas that are less important), or when YOU have gotten distracted by too much time spent or too many details and distractions.

It’s simple: “Let me see if I understand…” then review what has been agreed to. Not every detail, just what has been agreed to.

If there is anything that is outstanding and needs…

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Asking Clarifying Questions

Where assuming can bite you is when you are sure you know what the other person wants or means without really knowing... either because they haven’t fully offered that information, or because you haven’t asked enough questions to have enough information.

Ask questions that MAKE you sure you know what they mean: “Can you be more specific?” “Can you describe that to me in more detail?” “Can you tell me what that would look like to you?”

Don’t be afraid to slow things down so you can be sure…

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Asking Forwarding Questions

As one of my teachers, Sharon Drew Morgen said: “The person who is asking the questions is the person who is leading the conversation.” And she was right.

Questions keep the volley going and answering them without asking another question ends the volley. After answering a question, ask another one, like: “What is important to you about that?”

All questions don’t require an immediate answer in response. Ask a question in response, like “Can you tell me more about that?”

Consider that …

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Assessing versus Assuming

Assess OR Assume…you can’t do both.

And the only way you know which one you are currently doing is…drumroll, please…you are asking questions with only ONE of them: Assessing. Assessing means asking questions, not knowing and looking for evidence, but asking in order to know.

Asking questions is a skill. Every sales professional needs to see it as a skill to develop FOREVER because the customer buying process changes, the marketplace evolves, and the desire and ability to learn more and do …

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What does slow mean?

When salespeople tell me that ‘it’s slow’…I have to take a breath and get to neutral so that I don’t react. 😀 Why is that?

Because most salespeople who complain about traffic aren’t using the actual data as their complaint. They might be using one day of traffic against the same day a week earlier or another anecdotal comparison that is not based in fact. And even if it IS factual, now what?

My standard response to “It’s slow…” is something like, “I get that you have some concerns about the tr…

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