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Assuming the Sale Topic

Maybe I'm off-base on this one but it seems to me that "assuming the sale" is frowned upon by some members.

I see in some threads, people skirting the topic by claiming to be "amateurs": if you're getting paid commission, you ARE a professional. You might be in serious need of sales skills training but you are a professional SR. You might be doing this part-time but if you're collecting commissions, you're a professional.

IRS and Revenue Canada both define "SR" as having at least a portion of their income "at-risk" (ie. tied to performance).

So, the "amateur" thing is a non-issue.

Here's my point: if you're in sales, how can you NOT assume the sale? OR, if you're not assuming the sale, what ARE you doing?

Is your manager assuming that you'll get the sale and if not why does he/she let you out of the parking lot in the morning?

I'm going to take a breath in order to gauge the reaction.

Good luck & Good selling!
Pat - by OUTSource Sales
Maybe I'm off-base on this one but it seems to me that "assuming the sale" is frowned upon by some members.

I see in some threads, people skirting the topic by claiming to be "amateurs": if you're getting paid commission, you ARE a professional. You might be in serious need of sales skills training but you are a professional SR. You might be doing this part-time but if you're collecting commissions, you're a professional.

IRS and Revenue Canada both define "SR" as having at least a portion of their income "at-risk" (ie. tied to performance).

So, the "amateur" thing is a non-issue.

Here's my point: if you're in sales, how can you NOT assume the sale? OR, if you're not assuming the sale, what ARE you doing?

Is your manager assuming that you'll get the sale and if not why does he/she let you out of the parking lot in the morning?

I'm going to take a breath in order to gauge the reaction.

Good luck & Good selling!
Pat
Great topic, Pat.

I think we're all professionals if we get paid to sell. The definition of amateur is that you do something as an avocation instead of vocation.

The amateur thing is tiresome for me. I don't want to go to a physician that proclaims himself to be an "amateur". Likewise with attorneys and accountants and hair stylists and home addition suppliers. I don't think customers want to buy from amateur salespeople either. Customers like professionalism.

Skip Anderson - by Skip Anderson
Pat "Assume the Sale" has two different meanings for me. One meaning is writing up an order without asking and the other meaning is about positive expectancy. I have a thread on that - http://www.salespractice.com/forums/t-4757.html

Does "assume the sale" have multiple meaning to you too? - by Houston
Houston, being assumptive (in a sales context) has everything to do with attitude. If you didn't believe the outcome was at least possible, you wouldn't make the call.

To be successful in sales in the long run, a SR really needs to be supremely confident about their industry/product knowledge and their selling skills. Otherwise, you'd be taking that first 'no' and moving on. If you're assumptive about the sale, you'd be more inclined to probe further, qualify more, and find a way.

Late in the cycle, I remember pulling out an order form and hearing the prospect express a little shock, "... I didn't say I was going to buy it...". To which I responded , "You're absolutely right BUT you also didn't say 'no' ... let's quickly review the topics in which you HAVE expressed interest ..." (a rendition of the Ben Franklin close).

In that instance, I was working with a "low reactor" who was intersted but wasn't clear with where he was on the opportunity (either "yea" or "nay"). So, I started with the "order blank close" and went into the "Ben Franklin" close.

As opposed to simply being "assumptive", I was taking back control of the call.

You could infer, though, that I was being overly assumptive in this instance. He could have over-reacted and thrown me out (in which case, I would have gone into the "Columbo" close) ... ha!!

Good luck & Good selling!
Pat - by OUTSource Sales
Re-reading my post above, I'm reminded of cold calling in Ottawa as a yound salesman for 3M.

I was doing the PSSAC tower. It was bout 18 floors as I remember and knowing this would take a day, I'd left my coat/overshoes in the first office. When I was done calling on EVERY (non-government) office in the building, I went back to the office without a single sale!

Seeing that I looked a little whipped, Ray Lapointe pulled me over in the bull-pen and asked how my day went. I told him that I'd cold-called the entire building with nothing to show. He immediately started role playing the calls with me and said, "...you're leaving when they say 'no'..."! I was a little stunned. He finished with, "... that's where your job starts..."!

Rather than be de-moralized, the next day I picked another tower and came back at noon with a signed lease for a copier with a year's supplies! Three things had happened:
1. I got past the screen; and,
2. I found a niche application for our copiers; and,
3. I never left without some useful information;

You need to believe!

Good luck & Good selling!
Pat - by OUTSource Sales
Amen, Pat! - by bluenote
What prospect is charmed by the timid, shy or weak sales presentation? How does that prompt them to yank out their wallet?

A confident SR who probes effectively to uncover needs, listens attentively, qualifies professionally, closes frequently is "assuming the sale". This high level of confidence is impressive to everyone out there (ie. competition through to prospects). It opens doors and turns suspects into prospects.

We're not "born with it", rather, it comes from experience. It comes more efficiently with a strong manager/mentor. Sales training is a superb foundation for bringing this to the surface.

In point of fact, this high level of confidence in a SRs personal style is what commission is designed to incent!

Good luck & Good selling!
Pat - by OUTSource Sales
What prospect is charmed by the timid, shy or weak sales presentation? How does that prompt them to yank out their wallet?

A confident SR who probes effectively to uncover needs, listens attentively, qualifies professionally, closes frequently is "assuming the sale". This high level of confidence is impressive to everyone out there (ie. competition through to prospects). It opens doors and turns suspects into prospects.

We're not "born with it", rather, it comes from experience. It comes more efficiently with a strong manager/mentor. Sales training is a superb foundation for bringing this to the surface.

In point of fact, this high level of confidence in a SRs personal style is what commission is designed to incent!

Good luck & Good selling!
Pat
I agree, Pat. Especially about the strong manager/mentor and training.

One comment: experience can be overrated.

Experience alone will not improve sales. Learning from experiences is what improves sales performance. Experience only affects sales performance if salespeople change sales behavior based uponwhat they learned or from mistakes they made.

Skip Anderson - by Skip Anderson
Skip, your comment, "experience can be overrated" seems to have missed the two sentences which followed: "We're not "born with it", rather, it comes from experience. It comes more efficiently with a strong manager/mentor. Sales training is a superb foundation for bringing this to the surface."

I've seen some experienced SRs languishing out there and I seen some rookies "blowin' the doors off"! Clearly, it's not experience alone ...

Good luck & Good selling!
Pat - by OUTSource Sales
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