Donna can handle it all - almost


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Sales Autopsy
by Dan Seidman


My baby girl had filled her diaper and was screaming hysterically, so I pulled over my SUV and changed her in the back seat.

I was exhausted, all the time.

As a successful sales pro I'd barely given birth to my daughter and was back on the streets meeting clients and prospects.

I'd wake up early (after waking up throughout the night), feed my precious little one, pack a diaper bag, bundle up my baby and drop her off at a home-based daycare service.

That kid - dirty diaper - clean diaper juggling act in the car was making me late for my first appointment. I raced into the woman's house and practically threw my daughter and her diaper bag at the lady, then raced back onto the street to make my meeting.

Did I mention how tired I was? The only thing I did wrong was to give up my black purse to my daycare provider and keep my black diaper bag. Simple mistake could've happened to any fatigued, post-partum, full-time working mother.

The thing that was wrong about the thing that I did wrong was I realized it about 10 minutes into my first appointment.

Good Lord! That was a stupendous stink coming from my bag. I'm thinking "What a dummy I am. And what did I feed her last night?"

It was awful. I could not get in rapport with my prospect who must have felt assaulted by the smell as well. No sale, of course.

POSTMORTEM: This story reminded me how badly I miss changing diapers, now that my kids are old enough to fall out of trees. Most of you are probably familiar with the idea to be sensitive to prospect's senses - visual, auditory and kinesthetic. Did you also know that two other "representational systems" include the sense of smell and taste? Donna's story should help remind you to make your sales calls pleasant prospect experiences. Listen for verbs that indicate whether your prospect prefers to look at his or her world through eyes, ears or mouth. For a deeper understanding of this useful strategy, look at resources under “NLP” in Amazon.