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Asking for Referrals
For sales associates and leaders everywhere
Q1 2021 is now behind us. If you hit your quarterly goal, congratulations! If you missed it, check your performance statistics and you will find what was insufficient that kept you from hitting your target.
The obvious challenges most retail and trade showrooms are facing right now are supply chain shortages and insufferable lead times. This is what the remainder of the year will look like, so it’s critical that we manage what we can control.
If the motivation for the customer/client is to get something quickly, then that is an objective and objection to manage early in the conversation. Either you have product in stock that will approximate what is in their imagination or they are open enough (to other style and price) to recalibrate their vision so that they can use what is available. This conversation is complex and requires connection with the buyer and confidence on the part of the seller…and yet, it’s factual and is happening elsewhere with product shortages and backorders.
For sales leaders, this is the training and coaching that your team needs. Please don’t expect them to just know how to do this. They don’t.
For sales associates, be ready for this without buying into the customer’s despair. Familiarize yourself with what you do have available or incoming and be prepared to expand their thinking with sketching the space to discuss it from a holistic perspective – versus from the specific solutions that they came in asking for. That solution is unlikely to be satisfied by you or your nearest competitors, so learning how to manage it is essential, because it’s not going away any time soon.
The beauty is that sales are strong and demand remains high. And we know that once they do one room, they will do others.
Now, go practice this conversation with a co-worker so that you are comfortable with it.
Then, go sell something.