To help manage inevitable failures during a sales call, it helps to know your numbers. Know how many attempts it takes to close a deal so that having one fail is closer to the one you will win.
- The only thing worse than blowing a sales call is blowing a sales call in front of your boss, but we've all done it. Nobody likes to fail, but sales isn't like school where you can get straight A's. You see, sales has a built in element of failure. I want to share a story with you. Several years ago, our business had the most successful year we'd had up until that point and I was looking at the financial results of my husband, who's my business partner, and I noticed the travel expenses were really high.
My travel expenses were really high. As I got into it, I realized I had made a number of sales calls, gotten on a plane and gone places, and we hadn't closed the business. So I said to my husband, next year, I'm gonna make sure that I don't have so many calls that fail. My husband said, "I absolutely disagree." He said, "We had our best year ever because you were willing to fail." He looked me straight in the eye and he said, "If you close everything you're trying for, "you're not trying hard enough." He was absolutely right.
He was absolutely right. If everyone that you're calling on buys from you, you're not calling on enough people or you're not trying to close the really big deals. So one of the ways you can help yourself manage the inevitable failure rate in sales is to know your numbers. How many attempts does it usually take to close a deal in your business? How many proposals generally get accepted? If you have a 50% success rate, 40%, 70%, whatever it is, you know that every fail you have is just getting closer to a win.
is just getting closer to a win. When you have a call that bombs, and we've all done it, it can be really hard to shake it off, but you probably have more sales calls to make that day, or at least that week. So here's what you want to do when you come out of that horrible call, take a minute, review what went right, 'cause it probably wasn't all bad. Think about what went wrong and what you'd like to do differently next time. If you blew a call in front of your boss, don't wait for him to tell you what went badly. Unpack it yourself and be really clear.
Here's what I'm gonna do differently next time and here's how I'm gonna rectify this. But one of the most important things to remember after a bad sales call is to reset yourself. After you've reviewed the bad one, mentally review a sale that went really great, 'cause you don't wanna carry a negative mental model into your next call, you want to carry a positive mental model. So going back after a fail isn't easy, especially if you were the one who blew the call, but your clients aren't ogres, they're humans.
If you blew a call, just call you client up and say, "You know what? "I'd like a do over. "I wasn't my best. "In fact, I think I was pretty awful." Name it and claim it. Tell them I didn't listen well or I bungled my presentation. I wanna hit the reset button. The worst thing they're going to do is say no and if they do, you'll live. Tomorrow is another day.
In this course, Lisa outlines key techniques to find and leverage your "noble purpose" and connect with customers on a deeper level. Learn the three key elements of a great call opening, when and when not to use a pitch deck, and the secrets to creating a sales process that can flex with different customer types. Last, she provides advice to develop yourself professionally, such as how to talk to senior leaders and position yourself as a strategy partner instead of a pitchman, when and how to take your boss on a sales call, and how to network effectively. Use these tips to close bigger, close faster, and make your work more meaningful.
- Name three questions you should answer when crafting your noble purpose.
- Identify the first action you should take in a new sales job.
- Recall three pieces of information that should be included in a “win” email to the boss.
- Recognize the biggest challenge for salespeople.
- Determine what needs to be included in a pitch deck.
- List two reasons why a sales cycle may be longer than usual.