I was working recently with some inside salespeople who spend a lot of their time dealing with a very small number of customers. Their job is to maintain absolutely perfect customer service, and the whole time I’m talking with them, I’m shocked. On their desks was all kinds of stuff with their company logo on it, but none of them had even one item with the names of the customers with whom they talk. It’s absolutely essential you have the name of the customer with whom you are talking on the phone in writing in front of you when you’re on the phone.

It’s too easy to get distracted. I know… you are a sales professional and you may think your telephone selling skills are so incredible that making a mistake is unlikely. But it is very easy in a slight lapse of attention to forget who you are talking to. Write the name of the person and their company on a piece of paper in front of you before you pick up the phone. If you deal with the customer on a regular basis, print their logo out in color and post it in a very visible location in your workspace.

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