By Mike Golembeski

In the ever-changing and dynamic world of business we live in, time is a precious commodity. It seems we all have less of it than needed and with the increasing pressures to meet deadlines, maintain budget, remain competitive, utilize social media, etc., only add to the demand for effective time-management. So why is it that so many salespeople waste their clients’ time with a call that lacks purpose?

All too often, the eager salesperson dials the phone with the hopes of ‘connecting’ with a prospect and getting one-step closer to a sale. But…what is ‘connecting’ anyway? Is it feeding the person on the other end of the phone an entrée of self-serving verbiage? Is it an unprepared and nonstop sales pitch of services that might not be a strategic fit for the client? Fact is, you will never know if you don’t take the time to listen and lack the genuine concern necessary to determine your prospects’ needs.

The writer, Margaret Weis, once said, “hope is the denial of reality.”  If you would like to start taking control of your reality and interject tangible positive outcomes into your sales strategy, here are a few tips:

Be Genuine

Fewer things are more irritating to a prospect than a smarmy and fake approach. Don’t be afraid to be yourself.  Lose the canned resume, lose the sales pitch, and just be real. People will typically respect your candidness and almost always ‘see’ right through any hidden agenda.

Provide Value

Reach out to your prospect with a valid ‘call to action’ that will help them to satisfy their own customers’ needs and achieve their business objectives. This could be a remedy to an existing problem in their organization, a unique product or service offering,  or a noticeable ‘changing of the guard’ in the company where perhaps the new employee is looking for a new supplier. Either way, you need to offer insight into how your offerings can improve their business; otherwise, you might as well save them the aggravation of another sales call.

Be Accessible

It is not uncommon for many a salesperson to be unreachable once they ‘land the deal’. This is one of the largest mistakes you can make if your goal is to develop long-lasting professional relationships. Your job as a salesperson should be to offer continued support and added value in the long-term. In order to accomplish this, you must available to interface with your client(s).

Be Receptive

This is perhaps the most important aspect of creating a synergy with the client. If you find yourself doing more talking than the client, you are missing out on an opportunity to learn more about their ‘pain points’. Imagine going to the doctor, and instead of you telling the doctor about your symptoms, they initiate a monologue about where they studied, how they have helped cure countless patients, etc. Obviously, this would be a waste of your time (not to mention the amount you spend on a co-pay!).

So, if you are tired of crossing your fingers and wishing for a better outcome than the last sales call you made, stop, listen, and approach your clients with a genuine concern for their needs. You will make a valuable business connection AND increase your bottom line… nothing wrong with that!