I am really about to rant here! I think I may have actually discovered the new secret to sales. OK, maybe not. BUT, there is a behavior that I have been noticing for awhile now and it’s killing personal and professional sales campaigns almost immediately. I mean way past calling 911 and hoping for resuscitation. Let me illustrate in in this short story. A few weeks ago I was at a networking function. With me was a friend I had talked into coming with me. This friend who I shall call ” Joe” is a shy and somewhat reserved man. He approaches things carefully and thoughtfully. At this particular function was another colleague of mine who I shall call ” Sam” who has been asking me to introduce him to Joe. Since I am very careful of who and and HOW I make my connections and thought this would be a great venue. I cleared it with Joe to make sure he was comfortable and wouldn’t think he was being ambushed.
At the event when I saw that Joe was relaxed and having a good time, I walked him over to Sam and made the introduction. Joe asked ” so what do you do Sam?” Sam immediately went into not only what he does, who he works for but all of the great things his company could do for Joe. As we used to say at Xerox “speeds and feeds” On and on. Features and benefits. Blah blah blah. Like a blue streak of nonstop talking, Sam just didn’t shut up. He never asked Joe a single question, or professed any interest in him. He just kept on with the ” Sam Show”. Joe just stood there politely and listened and I was looking at Sam thinking ” OMG, would you SHUT up?” Finally, Sam took a breath and asked Joe ” so when can we meet?”. Needless to say that meeting will never happen. I was mortified. I know that Sam is way better than that and he just blew it.
The moral and obvious lesson here is simple: STOP talking. Start asking and you will sell more. Had Sam made that interaction about Joe and all about Joe, Sam would have a new prospect. Want to add to your sales funnel with high quality prospects? Ask more questions. Ask more and listen. Talk less. Take the pressure off yourself to make something happen. You will get your chance if you shut the heck up.
Rant over. Thanks for listening.
Epilogue: Joe is still speaking to me. Joe isn’t speaking to Sam and never will. OMG.
If you like this article, please share your comments, share with friends and colleagues.