A prospect has heard through the grapevine that your company is known as unethical and for trying to oversell beyond what the client really needs. They assume that as a representative of the company, you too must be unethical and over-zealous. How would you respond?
Many of you face similar situations at times. Someone has an unfavorable perception of you or your company.
Why does that happen?
You need to be aware that in this world, sometimes people have an inaccurate opinion of you. “They” say that perception is reality, but can you change that first impression? I think you can.
Part of being a sales professional is building a relationship with your prospects in ways that they can see the real you, your honesty and integrity.
Your sales EQ (Emotional Quotient) is your ability to assess a situation and shift other’s mindset to see you in a different light. I believe there are three elements we need to consider.
First, you need to understand their perspective. It’s not about you, it’s about them. You need to shift your approach to align with what is most comfortable for them. For instance, are they serious or sociable? Do they dislike small talk? Are they skeptical in nature? Understanding their perspective or personality style will help you adjust to how they prefer to dialogue. Even if you enjoy small talk, follow their lead. If they’re not into it, get right down to business. Give the prospect what’s most important to them.
Second, you need to understand who you are. It’s about self-awareness. What are your strengths? Are you an expert on the details of your solutions? Are you great at problem solving or are you best at making strong connections? Knowing your strengths and weaknesses will help you know where you need to do your own work to get better and how to make needed adjustments. Once you deliver what’s important to them, they will be more open to share with you what they need. This is attuning to the client’s style.
Third, you need to show empathy. Regardless of others’ style, you want to listen and show empathy for what matters most to them. You want to demonstrate that you truly care about their needs and how your solution might help them. Don’t focus simply on making the sale. Lead the meeting to learn about them, their business goals and challenges, and creating alternative solutions that might help them achieve their goals and alleviate their pain.
Client’s want to know that you have their best interest in mind. The more you can demonstrate concern for what they’re trying to accomplish, the more they will appreciate your perspective. Remember, you’re there to help them be successful. You only have their best interest at heart. When the prospect sees that, whether they are serious or sociable, you are building trust for the long term.
Understand their perspective, know your strengths and weaknesses and be empathetic. Remember that selling is the transfer of emotions from one person to another. But they must be emotionally open to hearing how you can help them.