GriefIf and Then: The two words no sales manager ever wants to hear.

If you’re hearing them, then you have a problem you need to deal with quickly.

Let’s put these two words into context.

Salespeople are quick to come up with a reason why they are not successful.

Typically, it is something like “the price is too high.”  The reasoning goes like this:  If we could cut our price, then I know I could close more sales.”

If it’s not price, it’s something else. “If only we could do it this way, then I know I would have more customers.”

This is nothing more than the typical blame game played by salespeople when they can’t sell.

The simply blame something else or try to mask their blame.  To them, by positioning it with the words “if” and “then,” they believe it’s brilliantly strategic.

Thinking they’re strategic is the last thing that comes into the sales manager’s mind.  As a sales manager, what I would be thinking is how the salesperson is trying to scramble to cover their lack of sales competency in closing a sale.

Hearing the words “if” and “then” in a sentence from a salesperson should only invoke one question.  What is the real reason they aren’t making the sale?

Sales managers should not be suckered into believing for a minute the salesperson is onto something.   Keep in mind, this trick is most frequently used by experienced salespeople when they are working for a new sales manager.

The issue is not “if” and “then.”

The issue is what is it going to take for the salesperson to understand the needs of the customer and make an offer that will address the opportunity.

Copyright 2013, Mark Hunter “The Sales Hunter.” Sales Motivation Blog.

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