Always Be Closing………… is for amateurs.
Glengarry Glen Ross is one of my favourite films written by David Mamet with an outstanding cast of Jack Lemon, Kevin Spacey, Vincent Price, Al Pacino and Ed Harris. Originally written as a play it gathered support and was quickly greenlit to be made into a film. However, the most famous scene with Alec Baldwin was added for the film when Mamet felt it needed a punch in the gut half way through.
And Always Be Closing was unveiled to the world.
Of course as sales professionals we had known this for years. Now the cat was out of the bag.
Procurement managers and sales contacts were quickly taught with how to “deal” with pushy salespeople who followed this patter. The sales person would try the Ben Franklin close to take control back. You know the one where you make a list of pros on one side and cons on the other for buying this product or service. That was developed over 100 years ago.
You think they don’t know that?
The 80’s and 90’s gave us the Powerpoint sales pitch. The sales person would start the sales pitch with a power point presentation and at the end hope that the customer has seen enough to say yes (if they were still awake).
Then in 00’s came the selling with some NLP (neurolinguistic programming) techniques thank to people like Tony Robbins but the customer adjusted to this by training their staff on what to look out for and expect.
So where next for the sales professional? Is there something that trancendes decades?
Here’s the thing. People, regardless of who they are can all be sold to. At some point every person in the world has bought something that a sales person somewhere has sold them. It might just be that it isnt you.
And for most people it’s technique of “here’s what I’m selling, do you want it?”
The truely great sales professionals – and here’s I’m talking about sales professionals who make millions in a day closing deals – for them it is about adapting what they are selling to the customers psychological needs and wants.
So, to give you a tool that you can use immediately try this.
Always Be Curious
That’s it. Always Be Curious.
You can never persuade anyone of anything. But you can help them discover it for themselves. And they only way that you can do this is through elegant questioning.
“I’m curious, why do you think other customers pay us more than the average?”
“Help me understand how we can get funding for this project”
“Can I check if my understanding is correct?”
Or some other variation. Try, experiement, have fun.