A Sales professional’s first and most important priority is to ensure clients are well-served by the advice offered and received.  Personal connections can be as important as the product or service information salespeople offer customers – if salespeople want get the most out of relationships for their customers and themselves, personal connections need attention too.  Here is some Selling ASP Thoughtware to ponder concerning connections.

  • “Me too.”  We tend to put ourselves on pedestals as if we are the only ones who have experienced something.  If this was true, there could be no empathy. We all have “I’ve been there” moments.
  • We choose to stay connected.  It is a conscious decision made by salespeople, not just something that happens.  Salespeople must work at it.
  • Ecclesiastes 4:9.  Two can accomplish more than twice as much as one, for the results can be much better.”
  • Connections happen when we are transparent.
  • Connections unify unlikely people.
  • Connections give meaning and purpose.
  • Avoid arrogance…associate with people who you can help and who can help you…they come in all sizes, shapes and colors.
  • Don’t convert the selling situation into a format that prevents connections beyond the superficial.
  • The art of listening is fundamental to connections.  “He who answers before listening—that is his folly and his shame (Proverbs 18:13).
  • “He who has ears to hear, let him hear! (Mathew 11:15).
  • It is important to listen to words, but the speaker’s valuable message is rooted in why someone is saying what they are saying.  The why part of listening tells us about what the other person holds important.
  • Words are triggered by emotions, judgments, needs, wants and discovery. When a customer brings something up, that customer may want the salesperson to be informed, but that customer really wants to “talk about something important” to him/her at that time.
  • Distractions impede understanding.  What leads salespeople to wander?  Perhaps the worst distraction – formulating a response before the other person has competed what s/he has to say.
  • Listeners connect.  And, the listener does not have to be interested in the subject of what the other person is saying….but must be interested in the fact that the other person is saying it.  Listening allows salespeople to change the subject.
  • In selling, you need what the customer has more than they need what you have.  Likewise, you need to listen to the customer more than the customer needs to listen to you.
  • Salespeople must avoid the compulsion to make their opinions known – one already is — in the salesperson’s opinion, everyone should buy his/her product/service.
  • Salespeople too often come to meetings with a font of product knowledge that they wish to empty from their brains and download into the brains of customers.   It is more important for the salesperson to fill his/her brain with knowledge of the customer.
  • We’ve heard many say that others do not listen well even when the salesperson strives to listen.  Gauge customers’ listening attentiveness and salespeople will have better success.