Selling more by selling lessArticle added by Steve Lewit on February 6, 2012

Steve Lewit

Buffalo Grove, IL

Joined: February 27, 2008

My Company

Let's break selling into two components — the desire to make a sale and the process of making a sale.

The desire to make a sale lives in every salesperson. Income derived from sales supports our families, allows us to give back to the community and makes us feel good. All top sales professionals have a red hot inner drive to produce business and are emotionally attached to the results of every sales call.

The process of making sales is how we go about achieving the goal of the sale itself. It is the journey rather than the destination. Unfortunately, old school selling puts a higher priority on reaching the destination, closing the sale, than it does on the quality of the journey.

That is why old school selling is filled with aggressive and manipulative techniques to force the client to travel on our journey, the journey to yes, which gets us to our desired result of a closed sale. What we find, in reality, is that by trying to get our clients to take the road we choose for them, to box them in to our journey, they balk and either hide or lie to us. This is their way of protecting themselves and keeping true to the journey that they prefer.

In fact, old school selling creates many of the problems it purports to solve:
  • It creates the selling barrier it teaches us to overcome; it raises objections that it then teaches us to handle

  • It undermines trust and makes us work harder to earn it

  • It pushes and pulls on people which makes them feel disrespected while we are telling them that we indeed do respect them

  • And finally, it forces clients to hide from us so we then find it more difficult to get information from them
In short, the process of old style selling sets into motion a never ending circle of difficulties and then creates methods of handling the difficulties it raises. It's like a drug that creates side effects which requires more of the drug to cure.

The new process I am teaching you is a process that fulfills your desire to make sales, but does so in a more efficient and fulfilling way. It requires you to give up your old process while keeping the fire to make the sale burning in you. Let's take a look at how to accomplish that.

My selling world

Like you, I'm on fire to make sales. However, my process keeps that burn inside me. It never influences my process and never reaches my clients like old school selling techniques do, ultimately burning them and driving them into hiding.

It's like leading a double life. On the inside you are burning to make a sale; however, on the outside you are totally out for your client, passive about the sale and totally unwilling to use any old selling technique which would reveal your innermost desire.
Here are the rules for selling without selling.
    1. Keep nurturing your inner drive to make sales.

    2. But, stop trying to make sales using old selling techniques.

    3. Put strategies in place that make certain that your client is not taking advantage of you and that there is always a mutual benefit (e.g., they won't leave their current advisor but want your opinion about what they should do.) While these strategies may lead you closer to the sale, they are not sell driven — they are reality driven (e.g., if your client is not willing to leave his advisor there is no mutual benefit to further conversation.)

    4. Maintain an outer attitude by taking on an acting assignment in your sales calls where you are a person who is independently wealthy and doesn't need any business.

    5. While being watchful of making certain there is mutual benefit, never take your client on your journey. Always go on theirs and explore where it will ultimately take them (you will find if you can bring your client to reality about their current situation, they will then decide to look at the options you have for them — no manipulation required.)

    6. Finally, instead of telling clients what they should be doing, learn the art of how to get your clients to say what you would like to tell them (e.g., you want to tell your client that annuities would be a good choice for them; instead, how do you get them to say that they would like an annuity?)

All of the strategies I give you are designed to satisfy your burning desire to make sales, but incorporate a process that is void of any selling. They create a distinct separation between your inner goals and your outer process. Yet, when employed, they offer a more fulfilling process which, along the way, actually delivers more sales.
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