When we do sales organization assessments we often run into the one and the same issue — sales reps do not want to take responsibility for closing the deal and leave the decision with the prospect. This may sound confusing — so here is the long story.

Its start with a sales reps defensive reaction.

When he first joins the company he firmly believes in the product. The prospect on the other side firmly believes in value of his money and questions the product. Most new sales reps will lose 5 or 10 initial deals. This is the moment when doubts start to crawl it — “is the product is really that good?”.

So our sales rep goes back to his manager and explains that there seems to be an issue with the product because customers do not want to buy. And he lists all the objections he got from them.

The good sales manager can easily counter all or most of the customer objections as presented by sales rep. This puts our sales rep in question into an awkward situation — he :

  • accepts his incompetence and learns how to sell this particular product, or
  • plays mind tricks on himself to find an excuse.

In reality — finding excuse is easier. And the most typical excuse in this case is the following: “I do everything right and if the prospect is smart — he will understand and agree”

There are two approaches to closing deals which highlight the approach to taking responsibility for result :

  • make presentations and counter objections trying to prove that he needs it
  •  change the customer perception of the product

The first one is easy and many salespeople follow these route. It is a safe switch for when the deal fails he can always say: ”The product is great, I made the great presentation and countered all his arguments. So would he have the need and be a smart person — he would have bought”. And thus he leaves the responsibility for the decision and result with the prospect.

The second one is more complex as it requires to understanding the needs and motivations of the prospect before making any offers or presentations. And in this case the sales rep has no excuses and takes responsibility for result.

We do Sales Reps reviews that help to identify the real concept of responsibility in sales your team has.


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