My Mission…

”There is NO ONE harder to negotiate for than me, even for something like buying a home or car, so negotiating over the value of my own work is daunting. So much so, prospects and clients can feel it. For the services I offer to provide there are fees; however, for the quality of and the commitment to that which I provide there are no monetary equivalents. As a marketer and provider of products and/or services it is my goal to instill within my prospects and clients a confidence that the integrity, dedication, and commitment I bring is an ethic that also spills over into my personal life. It is who I am; and to that end, there are no exceptions.”

As for my employer – it can expect the same. Peers, superiors, and subordinates will also get nothing less and to this end as well, there are no exceptions.

Arnie Sherr

Are you the above? And if so, are you getting this across to your prospects and clients? Those who live in the top 20% of the Paretto Principle (Also known as the 80/20 rule) do this naturally. Is it possible those who live in the bottom 80% of the Paretto Principle are there because they do not take the time to make known their own core values? I will bet my last million I am correct!

Ask yourself these questions as though you are the prospect or customer…

  • Have you ever brought home a new car or house and told everyone you were “sold” the car or house?
  • How often have you bought from a salesperson you did not like or trust?
  • How often after making large purchases, did buyer’s remorse’ set-in?
  • Have there been times when you have decided to return something and felt bad for the salesperson that helped you make the purchase?
  • How often have you recommended a salesperson for excellent service?
  • How many times have you complained to a manager for the poor service of another?
  • Have you ever felt so good about someone who assisted you in a purchase that you believed this person could be your friend?
  • Has a salesperson ever caused you to feel like you wanted to give them first crack the next time you need their products or services?
  • Have you ever had to request another salesperson because you felt you are being treated poorly?
  • Have you ever taken note of those businesses to which you feel loyal and, conversely of those you have mentally black-listed?

I could add more questions to this list; however, I think you get the point.

Rather than suggest people buy from people they trust and like, it is better illustrated to say that people generally won’t buy from people they distrust and dislike. Most times, when good service is rendered it goes un-commended because good service is as it should be. Unless service is “exceptional,” it is generally performed and accepted routinely without applause or special notice. However, poor service is generally reported not only to management, but to the next 15 people or so with whom unhappy customers/clients come in contact.    

If it is desired to be a successful salesperson then the message is clear; you must “warm-up” your prospects and clients. I can’t remember the last time a salesperson attempted a warm-up. It seems to have become a forgotten art!

Warm-ups can take a few minutes or a few seconds; whatever the case, the warm-up is the only opportunity salespeople have to build trust and confidence and breakdown consumer defenses. Once you’ve lost your customer’s trust it is be best to turn them over to another. There are no second chances.

I’ve had people tell me they are good salespeople. When I ask them why, they fall short of convincing me. If they cannot convince me in an informal setting, then how do they convince prospects and customers? Most cannot define “good salesperson.” That of itself tells a great deal!

Some, even though they have been told over and over again of the importance of warm-ups, still refuse to warm-up their prospects and clients before presenting their products or services. And they wonder why their numbers are poor as they bounce from one job to another. When making a pie, omitting just one ingredient changes the best of the finished product, its taste. I’ve never heard a single successful salesperson say anything other than how important is the function of warming-up.

Now, let’s apply another bend to this writing; the job interview. Is it very different from selling products and services? After all, isn’t the purpose of an interview to identify and acquire the services of an individual? When companies post a job vacancy it is because they want to hire someone who can fill certain needs. Therefore, if you are sitting before an interviewer, is it not your job to sell you? Is there the slightest chance interviewers hire people they don’t trust or like? So then, how can we earn that trust and respect before actually presenting our wares? You can do as stage performers do; have another warm-up the audience? Certainly, you are not able nor is it practical to have a “Dr. Phil” warm-up your interviewer. My word, I guess you’ll have to do it yourself!

You can make it happen by first, controlling the interview. Perhaps, you may begin like this; “Ms. Interviewer, before we get started, I’d like to take a few minutes for us to get to know each other.” That’s right; the warm-up is a mutual exchange. Its purpose is to open-up about you and to encourage the same of the interviewer.

The purpose is two-fold: First: Allow the interviewer inside to discover things about you not revealed in your cover letter and resume; sincerity, integrity, ethics, outside interests, family, and your demonstrated ability to communicate, etc. Second: Asking interviewers a few questions about the same topics offers them opportunities to relax. Like most, they too feel good when talking about themselves. Opening-up, however brief, reduces tension and introduces the sincerity and trust that gives you an edge. It is entirely possible that of the others they interview some may also engage in warm-ups. That being the case, imagine how not doing so may weaken your chances of an offer of employment.

To find more about substantive warm-ups, you may browse the Internet or locate the many books on this subject at Borders and Barnes & Noble Booksellers. And, let’s not forget Amazon.com.

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