7 years ago
February 21, 2017

Top 3 Things Great Sales People Avoid

Following are the top three things that great sales people avoid, and that you should take care to avoid to further your own career in sales.

Claire McConnachie Recruiter
Claire McConnachie

things great sales people avoidA committed sales person can learn how to sell better by imitating the habits of great sales people. Yet imitating the successes of top sales people is only half of the story; to truly improve your sales numbers, it is equally important to sidestep the habits that these high performers avoid. Following are the top three things that great sales people avoid, and that you should take care to avoid to further your own career in sales.

#1 Thing that Great Sales People Avoid: Talking Too Much

Great sales people know that it is easier to talk the way out of a deal than it is to talk the way into it. With this in mind, great sales people always avoid talking too much. That does not mean that a great sales person avoids talking. Rather, he or she focuses on developing a conversation as opposed to offering a one-way stream of information. This is done by:

  • Asking deep open-ended questions
  • Allowing clients and prospects ample time to speak
  • Abstaining from interjections and interruptions when a client or prospect is talking

Many times, the natural instinct to avoid silence is the cause of talking too much. Great sales people learn to accept silence as an ordinary part of any conversation, and diligently evade the impulse to fill it. As you work to develop this habit, remember that the instinct to avoid silence is as strong for the prospect as it is for you, and the prospect will fill it if you do not – likely with information that you can use.

#2 Thing that Great Sales People Avoid: Using Overarching and Unnecessary Generalities

Prospects make deals based on the specific benefits to their business, not to what has generally worked for others. Great sales people are attuned to this distinction and use it to their advantage. Consider the likely difference in a prospect’s interest when told “Our product has improved production times by XX% for Company A [the prospect’s competitor]” as opposed to the more general “Our product has worked for over one thousand satisfied customers.” 

It is true that generalities are sometimes necessary; it is all too easy to become trapped in specifics that are not of interest to a prospect. Great sales people successfully avoid unnecessary generalities by focusing only on the specifics that are truly important to the prospect. This is made possible by genuinely listening to a prospect’s responses and questions to establish the prospect’s needs and areas of interest, a habit that invariably supports sales.

#3 Thing that Great Sales People Avoid: Sharing Negativity

Even great sales people have off days, but you would never know it to hear them talk about it. This is because the best sales people avoid negativity: Negative actions, negative words, and anything else that can convey the impression of a negative attitude. Great sales people adopt this habit early; once they learn that people always respond better to positive thoughts and actions, negative expressions leave their vocabulary.

The natural outcome is that a positive attitude extends across a great sales person’s habits. When you speak positively, that attitude subconsciously affects everything else that you do. It also affects the way that others, including prospects and clients, interact with you; a positive outlook can spread more quickly than an office cold. 

As you work to adopt the habits of successful sales people, be sure to avoid the same things that great sales people avoid. This will help you just as much, if not more, in advancing your sales numbers and your career.

Claire McConnachie Recruiter

Claire McConnachie

Claire has 4+ years of experience in sales and recruitment. As a Director of Client Services, her main objective is to connect great people to great companies by building strong relationships with both top clients and candidates in the sales industry. She specializes in sales roles of all seniority levels for both enterprise and start-up clients North American wide. When Claire isn't networking with top talent, she enjoys being outdoors, traveling and spending time with friends & family.