Taking the road less traveled: how a different approach to sales changes everything


By Phil Harwood

It is commonly stated that one out of every ten salespeople outsells the remaining nine. The reason why this principle applies in many situations is because the most successful salespeople follow a road less traveled. Instead of doing what is common, with limited results, they do what is uncommon; they employ a different approach, and it changes everything.

Early in my career, I sold cars for a few months while I was deciding what my next career move would be. There was one salesperson at this dealership - Roger - who sat at his corner desk with a lineup of people waiting for him while all of the other salespeople tried desperately to occupy their time in between the occasional new sales prospect who wasn’t there to get in line at Roger’s desk. Roger sold 30+ cars per month. The rest of the sales team sold about 30 as well--collectively. 

Why is this a thing? Why does one salesperson sell as much as the rest of the team combined? The answer is found in their approaches to sales. The common salesperson unknowingly approaches sales with desperation. They talk too much and don’t listen enough. They focus on features and benefits instead of focusing on what their prospect’s needs are. In a nutshell, they’re focused on themselves. They want to make a sale regardless of whether or not what they’re selling is the right solution for their prospect. 

I was invited to attend a sales seminar while I was selling cars, along with the rest of the sales team minus Roger. Roger couldn’t ever get away from his desk because of the lineup of buyers who would only speak to him. At this seminar, attendees were shown how to talk through as many features and benefits as possible in two minutes. It was an exercise in speed, as if the more words a salesperson could get into two minutes, the more likely a sale would occur. The entire approach and premise was ridiculous and may be one of the reasons car salespeople have a reputation of being some of the worst salespeople. 

There is a better way. It’s the road less traveled and it changes everything. Roger learned this approach many years prior and now just sits at his desk making deals while everyone else makes coffee. Are you ready to learn about this uncommon approach? 

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Tags: Sales , Change , Approach , Different ,