One of the main reasons that people hate sales, when they do, is when high-pressure tactics are used. People really don’t like being pushed. They like it even less when they buy because they’ve been pushed so hard, they felt they couldn’t resist. The nasty taste left in the prospect’s mouth from that sale will never go away and will become part of their sales resistance. The next salesperson they encounter will have an even harder time selling something to them.
Interestingly, salespeople really don’t like doing it, either. They would much rather have a more relaxed, easy conversation with someone and bring them to the close as part of a natural progression.
Most of the time when salespeople use high-pressure tactics, they feel they must in order to make their numbers. But here’s the thing: if salespeople followed the sales process, they wouldn’t need to use such tactics. They wouldn’t have to be upset about using them, and the prospect wouldn’t be upset about being on the receiving end.
There is always pressure on a salesperson from their management. It’s a fact of business life that will always be there. Statistics bear out the considerable pressure put on salespeople. A survey* showed in raw numbers just how bad it is:
• Only 10 percent of sales meetings result in a sale
• Only 37 percent of salespeople are considered to be effective
• Only 1 out of 250 salespeople exceed their targets
• The top 20 percent of salespeople account for 62 percent of revenue.
• 26 percent of salespeople leave their jobs (12 percent voluntarily and 14 percent in-voluntarily)
A former boss of mine used to joke about it—salespeople could go through the whole month and it’s nothing but pressure, pressure, pressure. Then the month ends, and the salesperson could have had the best month of their life, but their boss is right there with, “What are you doing for me now?”
Don’t Give In
That doesn’t mean, though, that the salesperson should pass that pressure onto their prospects and customers.
Part of what makes a salesperson great is that, first of all, their sales funnel is very wide at the top. They have lots of prospects coming in.
But second, they don’t pass down the pressure they get from their management to their prospects and customers. Instead, they just care for the person in front of them and have trust in the sales process. They follow that process, developing trust, and educating the prospect. By the end of that process, both the salesperson and the prospect will know that this is the right product or service for the prospect—and it will just fall right into the close without that awful pressure.
Remember, closing is never the problem—it’s always the lack of a reliable and accurate sales process. When that process isn’t learned, the rep resorts to high-pressure tactics. The result is both the salesperson and the prospect feeling rather ugly about the whole experience.
Learn that sales process, and you won’t have to give in to the pressure ever again.
Sign up today at SELLability.com.
*2011 Accenture Sales Survey (from CSO survey)