One of the most important quality of someone working on sales is the sense of opportunity. In fact, I believe this is a quality everybody should nurture. Unfortunately, it is not so.
Recently, on a local event, I had the opportunity to present someone with decision power within a given company (let’s call him the A person) to a sales person who was trying to reach that precise company (the B person). The A person is a C-level at the company and has one of the most time-consumption jobs of the world. The B person really wants to sell A his product and A has the power to decide whether or not he’s going to buy that specific product to B.
Once I presented B to A, the conversation run like this:
A – Nice to meet you!
B – Nice to meet you too! So nice to have the chance to talk with you! I’ve been trying it so hard but could never reach you!
A – Well, I’ve been so busy. Sometimes it’s difficult to be there for everybody. Sorry!
B – It’s ok! Now that we’ve met, I’d really like you to come to our warehouse to see our new products! We have new products I’m sure you will like to know about!
A – Well, maybe you could bring me some samples…?
B – Oh, no! It’s much better if you’d come ‘cause we have all products on exposition….it’s much nicer to see all the products on the table.
Would you say this sales person had the sense of opportunity at all? If A was so busy, why would he even bother to go to a location he didn’t know to see some products he might even not need or want to buy?
It’s sad to see someone wasting a big chance by not having the sense of opportunity. Is this a lack of professional training or just a personal failure? I’m not sure, maybe it’s both. And lack of emotional intelligence, too. Selling is not just about products and prices, it’s all about people. If you don’t care about your customer needs or difficulties, why will your customer care about you at all?
How do you teach someone the sense of opportunity? Would love to get some feedback from sales people. Feel free to comment.