Having built organizations around salespeople for two decades it has become quite apparent that there are a handful of sales species, who are at great risk of extinction.
Perhaps this is due to the encroachment of threats, like email, social media, text and even the Internet, which offer alternative - albeit arguably less effective -- tools for making a sale, while also offering every buyer a plethora of competitive alternatives.
The bad news is that these species of sales people are highly endangered. The good news is, they are out there, and when you find one, feed and nurture them lovingly because when it comes to sales people, they just don’t make them like they used to. Here are the seven endangered species in sales.
1. The person who actually answers the phone.
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Twenty years ago, when a salesperson's phone rang, they answered it to see who it was. Today, it is more likely that when a salesperson receives an unrecognized call, they let it go to voicemail so that they can determine who the caller is before calling back. This creates a long game of phone tag, and by the time the salesperson reaches the potential client, they’ve already purchased elsewhere.
2. The person who admits they were wrong.
While out in the wild, if you happen upon a salesperson, who readily admits a mistake, it’s a good idea to hire her. The more common type of modern day salesperson is the kind who will blame manufacturing, shipping, the weather or even worse, the customer, for the mistake.
3. The person who says thank you.
Rare, but there are a few living sales species, who still send a handwritten thank you note after each sales conversation. Not only is it polite, it’s also great for business. These rare sales types develop great customer rapport and tend to build strong sales pipelines.
4. The person who goes out and gets it.
These are the mountain lion types that time block a few hours every day to call on potential clients, and I don’t mean through social media, mailers or text.
No, these rarities pull out their scripts, and they work the phones, or knock on doors - doing everything in their power to get the belly-to-belly meeting with customers. These people eat rejection for lunch, and because they are so consistent in their approach, they tend to make the very best salespeople.
5. The person who under promises and over delivers (UPOD).
The rare UPOD is a species that under promises their value and then over delivers after the sale is made.
It’s more common with modern day sales people that they promise, promise, promise everything, including the kitchen sink in order to make the sale. Whereas the extremely rare UPODs are more interested in building long-term client relationships by being realistic in their sales delivery and then delivering more than what they promised after the sale is made.
6. The person who courts the customer.
In today’s sales environment, many sales people mistakenly believe the sale is over once money has exchanged hands. There is, however, a rare sales species out there that is more of a long-term courter.
In other words, they see the sale as the start of a long term sales opportunity, not the end of one. These long-term courters tend to check in with the client regularly - long after the sale has been made -- to see how they like the product or service and to see if they need anything else.
7. The person who closes.
Marketing, prospecting and presenting a value proposition are all well and good, but they don’t generate revenue.
They are simply mile markers on the way to the sale. The best sales people are the ones, who consistently practice their ABC’s - Always Be Closing.
This is the species that is armed with high powered objection handling techniques and scripts. They are quick to understand the client’s pain points so that they can offer a solution, and close the sale.