A “no” is easier than a “yes” from your dream client. You have to work hard for a “yes.”
Saying yes means leaving the status quo for the unknown. And the unknown means risk. It doesn’t matter to some people how much proof you provide, what your references say, or what guarantees you are prepared to give them, change is scary. Change is a roll of the dice. It’s putting your fate in the hands of chance. Even if the risk is nowhere near as great as your dream client perceives it to be, it’s easy to avoid the fear of making a mistake than it is to say “yes” and embrace the risk.
It is easier to tell a salesperson “no” than it is to explain to your peers, your management team, and your leadership that you are making a significant change. Even though your dream client may have enough dissatisfaction that they should be compelled to change, building consensus and helping an organization change is difficult at best. A lot of your dream clients would rather live with problems that they know and understand than deal with the challenges of bringing the rest of their organization along with them. To give you a “yes,” they have to go collect a lot of “yes” answers. Telling you “no” can be much easier than pushing back against the powers that be.
Telling a sales person no is likely a single event. Your dream client gets to say “no” once, and then they may have to do a little explaining to get you off their telephone. Telling a sales person “yes” can mean dozens and dozens of additional conversations that need to occur before a decision is made and even more once a new solution begins to be implemented.
Even though you may be able to see the massive dissatisfaction and the compelling case for change, you may underestimate how difficult it is to gain a “yes.” The more significant the change, the more difficult it can be to get a “yes.”
If you are going to be an effective salesperson, you are going to have to work very hard for a “yes.” Often harder than you expect.
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Filed under: Sales 3.0