By Martin Goodyer (United Kingdom)

Effort 99 Requirement 98 = Happiness. Effort 99 Requirement 100 = Misery

Trained salespeople may already have 99%of what it takes but when a sales needs 100%, it’s just not enough

Selling has got a bad reputation and that’s a shame. Most sales interactions have a structure that starts at zero and ends at one hundred percent when the sale is confirmed. That’s hard work, is stressful and from the point of view of a skilled coach, unnecessary. A skilled sales coach knows that if when meeting a client for the first time there’s just the final one percent to cement the sale, then selling is a lot of fun. Yet on the whole salespeople are suspected of being insincere and having an agenda of their own before they’ve even opened their mouths. Sales training typically tries to equip the sales person to be ever more manipulative and to use ever more complex psychological jiggery-pokery to get the ‘prospect’ to sign on the bottom line. The supposedly clever salesperson will attempt to build a relationship with their apparently unsuspecting source of revenue in the hope of selling more and more product, and the annals of sales training manuals are packed to the gunnels of examples of how wonderful their approaches are and how successful the fully trained salesperson can be. However there is a problem. If these techniques are so good how can it be that another salesperson steals a client away, or that a long established client suddenly decides to buy elsewhere even though you could have offered just a good a deal? 99% readiness for a 100% deal won’t cut it.

Source: iCN Issue 9 (Sales Coaching); pages 24-26

About Martin Goodyer

Martin Goodyer is director of coach training at the iABCt and author of ‘How to be a Great Coach: Brilliant Coaching Conversations’