June 21, 2006
Sales: Never Give Up vs Never Going to Happen
We know Winston Churchill’s 1941 quote to Never never never give up. And in 1813, Captain James Lawrence said, “Boys, Don’t give up the ship.” The American Way to Never Say Die. (Well, Churchill was half American.)
So, three options: 1. When to know when to go once more into the breach? (Shakespeare thinks like an American. Or is it the other way around?) And 2. When to pick a hill to die on, or 3. When to go home.
Most often we sales guys pick # three too soon.
And of the three, which one is best? What is needed?
Into the breach with “Persistence, Persistence, Persistence,” says Gloria Berthold, President of TargetGov
Gloria reminds us that sales reps often quit too soon. They will bail out before they get tossed out.
Persistence. I was fortunate to have a sales trainer over two decades ago who taught how to measure persistence. In the high-pressure elite cadre of medical sales. His advice:
If you’re not getting thrown out of an account once a month, you’re not working hard enough.
This is always a challenge: balancing being nice, with being good . . .and persistent.
Sorry. Being nice is over-rated. Your Business Blogger always recommends being good.
But most of us sales guys want to be nice and good and never want to quit.
So when does persistence begin to look like lunacy?
Typical sales managers will typically berate their teams to never give up! to keep pounding the pavement! overcome that objection! flog that prospect!
I know. Your Humble Business Blogger used to do the berating.
But there are times when sales reps need to spend more time hyper-qualifying a prospect before any time is wasted. No need to talk with 5 cold call strangers per day, when one warm referral will get quota.
Persist, to be sure. But Qualify, Qualify, Qualify.
And then you will never be able to quit.
Was this helpful? Do comment.
Consider a free eMail subscription for this site.
Thank you (foot)notes:
Small Business Trends is the creation of Anita Campbell.