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TAKE A LEAP, SOMEONE WILL CATCH YOU!

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“Want to Take a Leap?” Elle Gibson

It’s great knowing everything isn’t it? Sure it is, you’ve spent your whole life becoming the expert.

YES, I’M TALKING ABOUT YOU AND ME. THIS WEEK I LEARNED SOMETHING NEW! LET ME EXPLAIN MY THOUGHTS.

Once you feel you’ve mastered something, like being the expert on your job or in a sport, it gives you a good feeling. People call you for advice and want your ‘opinion.’ Did you ever think that being an expert isn’t all it’s cut out to be? Are you getting  tired of the phone calls?

Did you ever think that being an expert has a downside?  I’ve spent most of my adult life trying to become an expert on certain things. In my mind, if I’m not an expert, why would you hire me?

(The NLRB delivers a big kick in the pants to employers)

THIS WEEK I FOUND OUT I’M WRONG. SOMEONE SAID I GAVE THEM A ‘GOOD KICK IN THE PANTS,’ AND THEY LEARNED SOMETHING NEW. WOW. I GUESS THAT’S WHAT YOU’RE AFTER.

When we become experts, we develop patterns of behaviors that make life easier. Patterns we can replay whenever we need to. We rely on them to guide us so that we always get the same results.

I suggested to my friend that we drove a different way to the mall. Not only did she get upset, she got damn angry with me.

“I like everything the same she said, I’m trying to simplify my life and not have any surprises that will throw me off track.”

In my mind, that meant the track to boredom; I didn’t say anything, I kept driving. Just to give you some more insight, she takes a lot of antidepressant medications; I don’t have to tell you why do I?

What would happen if you practiced trying to be a non-expert? Suppose I told you it would make you more creative, less ‘stuck’ and possibly happier—what would you think?

I was listening to an interesting podcast on Masters of Scale, hosted by LinkedIn Co-Founder and Greylock Partner, Reid Hoffman. Those of you that have spoken to me know I’m enamored’ to “Masters of Scale” and it’s how motivate myself. The podcasts are all centered on people that have taken major leaps to try something new. Their leaps are based on ‘hunches,’ or ‘where the world is going,’ and then getting on a new bandwagon. Most of the people are experts in something but are bored being experts and knowing everything. They are looking for a new bandwagon.

I KNOW WHAT YOU’RE THINKING; IF I HAD ALL THE MONEY IN THE WORLD I WOULD LOOK FOR A NEW BANDWAGON TOO. OH REALLY?

WHY? BECAUSE THEY ARE CURIOUS AND LIKE LEARNING NEW THINGS?

I’m no different than you; I’ve spent 20 years becoming the expert. I’m finding it isn’t what it’s cut out to be.

I’M A LITTLE BORED! WHAT ABOUT YOU?

Being the expert is a great skill; it means we don’t need to re-learn every time we encounter something or someone we don’t know. We have developed patterns of behavior which we can re-play whenever we need to. We rely on our previous patterns of behavior to guide us, which often means we experience the same results.

We spend our whole lives trying to become experts on what we do and what we know. We see ourselves and strive at being the ‘best’ in their profession.

THERE’S NOTHING WRONG WITH THAT IS THERE? ACTUALLY, THERE IS.

When you continually hone your skills, you shut out everything else that threatens them. Consider the salesperson who thinks if he knows everything about (let’s say carpet) he doesn’t want to hear about any other products or what’s happening in the ‘tile’ side of things. He’s also not interested in learning new sales tips or anything about ‘customer touch points.’ All he knows is everything that happens in the store with customers, he has it ‘down pat.’

THIS WEEK I’VE DECIDED I WILL READ BEFORE I GO TO BED—NO MORE TV.

I WILL LISTEN TO PODCASTS WHEN I’M ON THE TREADMILL—NO MORE TV. SURE TV IS EASY; I GET TO LIVE IN SOMEONE ELSE’S WORLD, TAKE ON THEIR PERSONALITIES AND SHARE THEIR EMOTIONS.

I’M FIVE DAYS INTO MY NEW WORLD, AND IT’S INTERESTING. I HAVE TO THINK ABOUT ME.

I KNOW WHAT YOU’RE THINKING; IF YOU HAD GIZZILION DOLLARS YOU WOULD DO SOMETHING ELSE TOO. REALLY?

You really don’t need all the money in the world; you just need to test ‘not being the expert.’ Try a sport you’re not good at, listen to a different podcast, learn a new language. Put yourself in an uncomfortable place—not to worry, you can always go back to the safe “expert” place.

“Don’t just sit idle, learn something new everyday”

Visit MastersofScale.com to get a copy of the transcript of this broadcast.

#gettingmotivated #learningsomethingnew #takingaleap #learningnewthings #learning #Mastersofscale #beingtheexpert #founderofLinkedIn #Greylockpartner #TakealeapElleGibson #womenoflife#Lisbethcalandrino#Redhotcustomerservice#fabulousfloorsmagazine

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By |2018-04-14T20:18:03+00:00January 15th, 2018|Blog, Motivation, Sales, Sales strategies, Your Brain|0 Comments

11 Traits the new Salesperson Must Possess to be Successful

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Today's salesperson.

Today’s salesperson.

Over the holidays I usually work for an event company demonstrating their product. I do this because it gives me an opportunity to keep in touch with the customers. I also get to talk with them about everything, including life. It’s interesting what people will tell you about themselves and their shopping habits.

Many businesses are still behind the “electronic eight ball” when it comes to their salespeople. The salespeople and the managers are still functioning like it was the 90’s. Although no more than 10-15 years ago, the world has changed dramatically since then. There are somethings that have remained the same; the salesperson still has to build rapport, overcome objections and close the customer. How it gets done has drastically changed. Customers are influencing each other when it comes to where they shop and what they buy. The customer is either “with us or against us.”

The salesperson is now an integral part of the marketing plan. More than ever the salesperson is not just closing the customer, but need to be driving the customer into the store. Here is what’s changed and how the salesperson can become a driving force to bring customers into the store.

I believe this is the profile of the new salesperson:

  1. Web savvy and can show the customer around your web site. Also knows how to link to your Pinterest, Houzz and Instagram photos. Has also created some YouTube videos for you about products.
  2. Understands how social media works and posts updates of customers and their products.
  3. Seeks affirmations and testimonials for customers for your web site. Is not shy about asking for referrals online. Also pays attention to your online reputation.
  4. Has an up-to-date LinkedIn profile with over 500 connections. Knows how to link up with businesses to expand his/her network.
  5. Is consistent in online postings. Posts weekly if not daily about products and new jobs.
  6. Has a smart phone and is capable of taking photos and posting. Can also show customers how to post online and “like and follow” your business on Facebook.
  7. Understands the value of Houzz and how it can help bring in more customers.
  8. Knows how to put together an event at your business as well as build the invitation online. Understand how online “meetups” can help you build a customer base.
  9. Understands that “tweeting” is not just for the birds. Tweets regularly and has a following.
  10. If he/she doesn’t already have a blog, is considering one to help build a “personal” brand.

Most important can help you figure out why your IPhone won’t turn off. Every business needs people with technology skills. Let’s face it, change starts from the top; the salesperson can’t do it alone.

Thanks to “In search of sociable salespeople,”  for the photo.

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By |2017-03-03T12:06:49+00:00November 30th, 2015|Blog, Sales, Success|0 Comments

Are You Looking For More Retail Business? Why Not “Cold Call?”

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There's no such thing as cold calling.

There’s no such thing as cold calling.

It seems that all areas throughout the country are different; retail business is up or retail business is down. What seems to be steady around the country is that businesses that are out “looking” for business are thriving. We are talking about business that doesn’t come through your door from advertising.

 

Of course, you’re uncomfortable calling on people you don’t know especially if you’ve never done it before. However, maybe you do know them or someone they know. First, you have to know who to call on, so why not start with a brain storming session?

 

 

Who wants to cold call?

Who wants to cold call?

Whenever “looking” for business outside the store comes up so does a look of horror on the faces of most salespeople. Somehow they equate this with stopping complete strangers on the street and asking them to buy products. The success of outside business is to understand that there is no such thing as a cold call. The only people that make real cold calls are telemarketers. The good ones are able to make a connection with you in about 30 seconds.

 

The other day I answered the phone and the voice identifies himself from Time Life. Before I can hang up, he asks me if I like the DVD’s I bought three months ago. They were the best 10 years of Saturday Night Live. I told him they were great, and then he asks me which ones I like the best. Before we’re done, we’re both laughing. Next he’s trying to sell me another product.

 

I began to like him, but I told him that I didn’t think I wanted his next product. He was quite persistent asking me lots of questions. Didn’t I think the quality would be as good, didn’t I like what I got, didn’t I have hours of enjoyment?

 

Guess what? I bought them. I knew the product was good, and I received the CD’s immediately.

 

The same components that make a retail sale successful are identical to the ones for a cold call.

 

A few weeks ago, I was doing a training session, and one of the salespeople was trying to “match a product and price” for his church. I asked him, how long he had been going to the church; it was over 10 years. He also was an elder of the church but was sure his competitor had been in with a product he didn’t have. He was also convinced the price was cheap. My question, why didn’t he know the church needed flooring? He said he felt uncomfortable discussing business with the church members.

 

First thing, remember you are a pro, but maybe you need to retrain yourself and the skills that you already have. You just need to be more competitive and more organized. Why not check with everyone you know if they need your product? If they don’t know you have a product they can’t buy from you. Let everyone you know what you do for a living.

 

Forget the cold calling syndrome; it’s a thing of the past and the people who are successful at getting outside business don’t cold call; they find out everything they can about the customer before they call on them.  Just think the whole city belongs to you if you start networking with whom you know.

 

 

Remember profitable customers are being called on by every smart salesperson so you’re up against the pros.

 

The competition is out there trying to get the business. Some of these relationships go way back or maybe the business was just handed down but don’t give up.

 

Remember the old adage, consistency is better than good salesmanship but consistency takes focus, a ‘never give up’ attitude.

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By |2017-03-03T12:06:49+00:00November 16th, 2015|Blog, Sales|0 Comments

7 Lies Customers Tell and How You Can Still Sell Them

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Liar, liar pants on fire.

Liar, liar pants on fire.

Even seasoned professionals get taken in by customers who use statements to put them off. Rather than take it up with the customer they just give up.

Customer can bend the truth, especially if they haven’t made up their mind about buying. They will say just about anything to get out of the store. As a salesperson, if you’ve done your best, there is no reason to back off from the customer.

START BY NOT BELIEVING THE CUSTOMER’S EXCUSES! If you believe them, it’s over. If you believe them you do not believe in yourself or your business. 

Here are 7 standard customer lies and ideas for selling them.

  1. I can’t afford it. Now we all have had times when we couldn’t afford something; that doesn’t mean we didn’t buy it!

If you’ve explained the value of your product and how it will help the customer, they should be able to see that living without it would be a mistake. Ignore the statement and review the customer’s “conditions of satisfaction.” Give them the features and benefits that fit the customer’s key concerns. You can also suggest a product that is less money and explain the comparison. The customer may don’t let the customer scare you. Your job is to make them feel you have their best interest at heart, and your product is what they need.

  1. We’re just looking.” You’ve heard this a million times and you might be tempted to leave them alone. My suggestion, don’t.

Yes, people just look but if you leave them alone while they’re looking you run the risk of looking like you don’t care. Statements like, “We have some new products, and can I point them out to you?

“We have a huge store; can I help you find the right products?

These statements should be followed up with rapport building statements; anything other than trying to sell them. Talk about their kids, the weather or their smart phone.

3.”I have to ask my husband or my wife.”

One reason the customer might say this is because she or he doesn’t trust your judgment. If they don’t believe what you’re saying, they certainly don’t want to make the decision alone.  It may be true that they aren’t the decision maker so “nicely” review two or three benefits that fit their situation and be quiet.”

  1. “We weren’t prepared to buy; we have to look around.”

Don’t be afraid to tell them you understand, but you don’t want them to lose out on the product or pricing. Before they look around suggest that you review your product with them. Check out what they said about their situation and explain how your product fits the bill.

  1. I’ll know it when I see it.”

This is really a funny statement. If you ask them what it will look like they won’t be able to tell you. They may say you don’t have it. This is a good time to ask them to describe the perfect product to you. If you can get them to talk about it, you will probably come up with new ideas.

  1. It’s too expensive.”

This is a wonderful statement and gives you lots to work with. Review their budget with them and review how the product will work for them. This is similar, to “I can’t afford it.”

  1. “Your competition is cheaper.”

Your competition might be cheaper but are they as nice as you? In other words, building rapport and showing you care is more important than ever. Explain what makes you different and what you’re willing to do for them. Cheaper doesn’t always mean better even if it’s the same product.

What special treats do you have for your customers? A comfortable showroom, an interactive web site that really helps the customer finds the right products. Plenty of social media chatter that shows that customer’s trusts you. You might familiarize yourself with your customer’s online reputation.

How about this? A print out coupon they can only get on their smart phone while they’re in your store.  If you have “wiggle” room, make sure it sounds legitimate. It might do the trick.

Once you’re done, don’t forget to ask the customer  what she thinks about what you’ve said.  This is an easy closing statement that is overlooked by most salespeople.

Lisbeth has been doing sales and customer service training for over 20 years. Reach her at Lcalandrino@nycap.rr.com.

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9 Ways to Handle Pricing Before you Make it a Problem

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Are you shooting yourself in the foot with your pricing? Thanks to Mike Myatt for photo.

Are you shooting yourself in the foot with your pricing? Thanks to Mike Myatt for photo.

Everyone has their own take on pricing; some ideas are better than others.

This week I produced a  training video with  Tony J. LaGreca, president of Edmar Floorcare. His product is a vacuum that cleans deep pile carpet. One of the features of the vacuum is a sonic bar that vibrates at 200 per second. Tony pointed out I could say 12,000 per minute and that big numbers are better. I started thinking, numbers do matter.

 

Here’s my take on numbers.

 

  1. Customers like big numbers when they’re in their favor. Instead of telling the customer that the sale price on the $100 item is $40.00 why not tell them it’s 60% off? The bottom line is the same but 60% has a bigger punch.

 

  1. Always remember to explain to the customer how much they’ve saved rather than how much they spent. They can continue to justify their purchase for the next year.

 

  1. Everyone is looking for a savings or discount; this is why Marshalls and T.J. Max do such great business. The Goodwill is so busy they are now opening a boutique style shop. At least 1/3 of the Millenniums shop at Goodwill. So if they’re your customer, don’t forget they want to save money and are looking to save a buck. Check out the stats on the Millenniums.

 

  1. Let’s not forget the concept of “Lagniappe” something given or obtained gratuitously or by way of good measure. This expression thought of as New Orleans based, means giving the customer a tiny gift to tell them how much you care. It also helps soften the price; especially if the item is expensive. Think about serving coffee, bottled water or popcorn to make the customer feel welcome. Most retailers have a “kid’s corner” so the mother can shop. Ikea even has baby food in the fridge as well as a “Manland” baby sitting service with pinball machines and video games.

 

 

  1. If a  customer asks why you don’t carry the imposter  say you don’t think it’s a good product or it’s  worth the money. That will stop them in their tracks.

 

  1. When customers say, “I’ll be back,” ask them what they think about your prices. What do you have to lose? Pay attention to their answers and don’t justify your prices. Just listen. You can then ask the customer if you could explain why your prices are higher.

 

  1. Watch social media and see what your customers are saying about pricing in general. Are they talking about paying supermarket prices or the price of gas?

 

  1. Try different price points and test them on various products. Do customers like the $10.99 concept or is $11.00 okay? It was a big problem when JC Penney changed theirs to whole numbers.

 

  1. Connect with your customers on an emotional level, get to know them. The more you know about them and their buying habits the less likely you are to drop your prices.

 

The smartest thing you can do is not assume that price is the problem. Understand your products and the value you provide for your customers.

Lisbeth has been helping businesses build retail marketing and sales strategies for over 20 years. To schedule a consultation or have her speak at your business, reach her at Lcalandrino@nycap.rr.com .

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By |2017-03-03T12:06:52+00:00August 24th, 2015|Blog, Sales, Selling on price, The Millenniums|0 Comments

Does it Matter if Your Salespeople are Loveable?

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What makes a salesperson lovable?

What makes a salesperson lovable?

You probably know how to buy the right products and what time of the  year customers are likely to buy. You probably even run ads to drive customers into your business and think you’re good at it. But what about your salespeople? Are they lovable?

If so, why are these things happening in your business?

Sales people are complaining about prices. “We could sell more if your prices were as low as our competitors.”

They don’t really push for the sales, or call customers back. “I don’t want to turn customers off.”

“I can’t reach that quota; we don’t have enough customers.”

“Why don’t you advertise more?”

Our competitors are stealing our customers. “How can they give stuff away?”

So who is leading your crew? The only people in command are your managers.  Managers need to know what problems their salespeople face and then train them to overcome these problems or hire someone. Why do so many take the easy way out and think that product knowledge is the answer to all of their company problems?

One thing l know hasn’t changed; customers still fall in love with people not products. Despite this fact, businesses spend little on making their sales force “loveable” and confident.

Seven  to make your salespeople more ‘loveable and confident.’

The better people feel about themselves, the better they will be at their jobs. If you don’t feel good about yourself, you won’t learn and will lack in confidence. Find out what’s really bothering your salespeople and come up with the answers.

Train in areas that are causing the most problems. Not sure about overcoming objections? Train it and get your best salespeople to share their secrets.

Help them love what they do. Provide an atmosphere of support and learning. If people feel like they’re achieving, it’s likely they will love what they do.

Teach them how to use their time wisely. Some activities will bring in customers, and some things are just a waste of time. Sending notes to customers has high values, playing Candy Crush probably doesn’t.

Set a good example, or play ‘follow the leader.’ Managers need to be focused, supportive and always thinking how they can help people feel  fulfilled. Being positive and achieving goes a long way.

Encourage creativity; everyone has their own brand of creativity. Find ways to make it happen in all of your staff. There are fun games that encourage people to think differently. Once you play the game, tie the results back to their jobs.

Discuss the price of success. Success is not something that just happens. It takes years of preparation and learning.  While you’re making this happen, other things need to be put aside. Everyone will have to decide what’s most important.

Malcolm Gladwell  talks about the 10,000 hours to become an overnight success.

Being happy with you is the first step in being  lovable.

Lisbeth has been helping businesses build “lovable” relationships with their staff and their customers for over 20 years. To have her speak at your business or  develop a training program for your managers and staff–reach her at Lcalandrino@nycap.rr.com. Or call/text at 518-495-5380.

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By |2017-03-03T12:06:52+00:00July 21st, 2015|Blog, Sales, Success|0 Comments

Too Much Product Knowledge Can Kill Your Sale

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Too many benefits can hurt your sale.

Too much information can confuse the customer.

Have you ever noticed that new salespeople are often great sellers right off the bat? Of course, the owners are dying to teach them as much product knowledge as possible. After they get the product knowledge, something happens, they start losing sales. What’s the problem?

Product knowledge not linked to the customer’s situation is confusing.  The customer doesn’t want to know everything, only what they need to know to fix their problem. Why would I care about the car’s paint job if I’m asking whether the car will do 95 mph on a curvy  road in the rain? Why not stick to the obvious, the tires and the suspension?

We all know that customers buy value, and value can help overcome the price issue. Too much value can kill the sale. Let’s say the customer is concerned if the carpet she’s looking at has the best stain resist on the market. (She has an incontinent old dog and knows she will have to use a disinfectant on it so that’s another condition of satisfaction.)   The sales person is so excited that he starts talking about the twist, the denier and the backing, adding features that are now confusing to the customer. If we give the customer too many features, the customer thinks the price is too high. Why pay for something you don’t need?

Customers buy features that benefit them not a load of random benefits. Customers expect certain benefits when they make a purchase. They will ask, “I want this printer to print out 20 sheets in 30 seconds.” If that’s what the customer wants, then tell her what feature makes the printer fast. That’s what she’s buying.  If she balks at the price, then she’ll have to decide if her need is really that important.

Selling is about solving the customer’s problem, nothing else. A good salesperson listens for the problem and finds the right product.  Sometimes we spend too much time trying to fix other problems that don’t exist.

If it’s so simple why don’t we do it? Salesmen get nervous—there’s too much silence they say; I’ve got to talk!  You know the old saying, “The first one who talks loses.”

Selling is simple the customer will tell you exactly what they need. Your job, fill the need.

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By |2017-03-03T12:06:52+00:00June 8th, 2015|Sales|0 Comments

4 Ways to Transition Your Salespeople from Employees to Business Partners

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EmployeesIt appears that the country is trying to instill an entrepreneurial attitude into all of us. With many of the traditional high-paying jobs disappearing, we find ourselves in a quandary.

There are many people who were fortunate enough, often without much education, to move into jobs that paid well and provided a good retirement. It would appear that many of these jobs have disappeared. In addition, consumers have transferred much of their trust from the salesperson to the Internet. The role of the salesperson has been altered.

Salespeople have long been in a position to provide important product and service information to inquiring customers. Now, customers ask their friends or get information from many social media outlets. Let’s face it: A good salesperson has to think differently now. Salespeople are still part of the equation but must see themselves as more than salespeople. Having an entrepreneurial spirt will help.

As entrepreneurs, we are always looking for ways to find new business and come up with new ideas, and we realize that we can make or break a business. A successful entrepreneur is always looking for ways to understand his or her customers and find ways to become a trusted confidant.

I believe that anyone who receives compensation for a job is a partner. Many people often say, “I just work here,” implying that they have no say or effect on the business. These days, everyone needs to realize they have an effect on the business, and the customer certainly does care what they have to say.

Whether it is online or in the store, customers are seeking them out for advice, information and as a connection. Changing the salesperson’s role will have a tremendous effect on your business.

Here are some thoughts on how to take the employee-employer relationship you currently have and forge it into a new partnership:

  1. Ask your salespeople daily about their customers. What did they find out, what do they know and what changes do they think you should make in your business? Learning how to be inquisitive is one of the skills that should be taught. More than ever, it’s important to know how the customers got into your store and how the Internet has affected their decision to purchase.
  2. Encourage salespeople to seek new ways of engaging customers—new ones as well as existing ones. It’s likely that the satisfied customer will be your link to your next customer, since 90 percent of your business is from referrals.
  3. Engage and teach your salespeople skills that will help them connect with their customers. These days, whoever gets to the customer first will probably win. Getting there first means getting to them before they get into your store. Once they’ve connected to the customer, the salesperson must be building a marketing plan to stay in touch and link to the next customer.
  4. Determine what tools your salespeople will need in order to continue to become the customer’s partner. Will it be contests, holding events in your store or writing a blog to engage the customer?

All of our roles have changed; it’s no more business as usual. A partnership implies helping each other achieve goals and bringing more talent and expertise to the table. How will this work in your business?

Lisbeth Calandrino has been providing consulting and training for businesses for over 20 years. If you would like to book a consultation or have her speak with your team, reach her at 518-495-5380.

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Are Communication Skills Much Ado About Nothing?

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COMMUNICATIONI have been doing sales training for over 25 years, and I am always amazed when I see a salesperson having trouble building rapport. Here’s what Wikipedia has to say on the subject: “Rapport is one of the most important features or characteristics of subconscious communication. It is commonality of perspective: being ‘in sync’ with, or being ‘on the same wavelength’ as the person with whom you are talking.” In other words, rapport is when we get each other. It’s as simple as that, but it becomes complicated when we believe that everyone should think like us. Not only do we think it, we spend time trying to convince the other person of our position. If you’re spending your time convincing, it shows a lack of understanding of communication. In order to be a good salesperson, you have to give up your position of having to be right and hand it over to your customer. Remember, if you want to be right to win, that means the customer has to be wrong. In any transaction or relationship, no one wants to be wrong. According to Sravanthi Reddy G.,  selling is a two way communication relationship and involves talking and listening.

  1. Before conducting any type of sales training, I always suggest we do a standard sales training inventory: a test that will show the person how they communicate, who they communicate best with and what gets in their way.
  2. Learning about your communication style makes it easier for you to absorb new information and understand how it will help you. This is why school is so difficult for many; they can’t understand why they need the information and how it will help them. Once you do some communication testing, people will open up and want to learn. I use BEST Instruments because it’s simple and very revealing.
  3. Building rapport is the concept of connecting to your customer. Instinctively, we know how to communicate with people like ourselves. If you ask people why it works, they often say, “We just click.”
  4. You can click with anyone. Isn’t that amazing? Instead of passing on a customer because you don’t like them or just don’t get them, once you learn about yourself, you can make adjustments in your communication style.
  5. Great salespeople are in control of their communication. They know why they connect and what makes it work. On the other hand, amateurs leave it up to fate. Another great line is, “The customer just wasn’t ready to buy.” Building good rapport has little to do with the customer buying your product; it has a lot to do with whether the customer buys you!

Give a gift to your salespeople: the ability to understand their communication and sales skills. It will benefit them and your business many times over. Lisbeth Calandrino has been doing sales and customer service training for over 20 years. To book a consultation or have her speak to your group, contact her at Lcalandrino@nycap.rr.com or 518-495-5380. Lisbeth lives in Historic Hudson Park, Albany, New York,  with her cat Rainyday.

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By |2017-03-03T12:06:54+00:00November 18th, 2014|Blog, Reaching the Consumer, Sales, Success, Training|0 Comments

5 Ways To Get Your Salespeople Connected To Customers

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connecting-with-customer-service-advisorI have been doing sales training for over 25 years, and I am always amazed when I see a salesperson having trouble building rapport. Here’s what Wikipedia has to say on the subject:

 “Rapport is one of the most important features or characteristics of subconscious communication. It is commonality of perspective: being ‘in sync’ with, or being ‘on the same wavelength’ as the person with whom you are talking.”

In other words, rapport is when we ‘get each other’. It’s as simple as that, but it becomes complicated when we believe that everyone should think like us. Not only do we think it, we spend time trying to convince the other person of our position. If you’re spending your time convincing, it shows a lack of understanding of communication. Building rapport is part of customer service and the customer experience.

In order to be a good salesperson, you have to give up your position of having to be right and hand it over to your customer. Remember, if you want to be right to win, that means the customer has to be wrong. In any transaction or relationship, no one wants to be wrong.

  1. Before conducting any type of sales training, I always suggest we do a standard sales training inventory – a test that will show the person how they communicate, who they communicate best with and what gets in their way. The one I like the best comes from BEST Instruments. It is short but conveys lots of information.
  2. Learning about your communication style makes it easier for you to absorb new information and understand how it will help you. This is why school is so difficult for many; they can’t understand why they need the information and how it will help them. Once you do some communication testing, people will open up and want to learn.
  3. Building rapport is the concept of connecting to your customer. Instinctively, we know how to communicate with people like ourselves. If you ask people why it works, they often say, “We just click.”
  4. You can click with anyone. Isn’t that amazing? Instead of passing on a customer because you don’t like them or just don’t get them, once you learn about yourself you can make adjustments in your communication style.
  5. Great salespeople are in control of their communication. They know why they connect and what makes it work. On the other hand, amateurs leave it up to fate. Another great line is, “The customer just wasn’t ready to buy.” Building good rapport has little to do with the customer buying your product; it has a lot to do with whether the customer buys you!

Give a gift to your salespeople: the ability to understand their communication and sales skills. It will benefit them and your business many times over.

To schedule Lisbeth to speak to your employees or schedule a consultation, reach her at Lcalandrino@nycap.rr.com.

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