Outlaws, Sheriffs and Selling

The sheriff said to the outlaw, “I’ll give you a fair chance. We’ll step off ten paces and you fire at the count of three.” The men pace off, the sheriff shouts, “One, two” – and then he turns and fires. The dying outlaw says, “I thought you said to fire on three.”

The sheriff said, “That was your number. Mine was two.”

Hey, when you’re selling, did you ever notice that your buyer’s timing is never quite in sync with you? Not on the same page? Not working with the same number?

As sales pros we prefer urgency and a quick decision. As buyers we’re often fairly cautious, slow, even methodical before making our choice.

So shame on us, when we sell, that we are surprised by buyers who won’t give us a clue how soon they’re deciding what to decide.

Like any objection, we should be prepared to pre-empt a buyer’s propensity to delay decisions.

At the very least, we can request the time-frame whereby the prospect’s company needs to conclude its evaluation of products and services.

So you’ll find that you have the skills to create urgency (more on how to do that, on a later date) or not.

If not, at least get that buyer to share when they’ll be done talking and ready to take action.

This way, you find out what his or her number is and you adjust your sales approach accordingly.

Now that we’ve addressed this repeating problem you should never let it happen again. If you do, that’s weak selling. And in the eyes of your manager, criminal behavior.

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