The questions keep coming in through some of the Linkedin groups. I thought I’d address a few more this week.

Q – What do you do with prospects that never respond? A – Two things. 1) I assume that the lack of response has nothing to do with me personally. They have no need, no time, no pain or something else is making them not respond. SOMETHING ELSE BUT ME. That’s the key. 2) I move on. I might re-contact them in a few months if I came up with a new compelling reason to reach out. But in the short term, I move on. Show me someone who thinks every account can be closed and I’ll show you someone who only cares about commissions and not about his clients.

Q – What is the top thing you’d suggest for someone starting their first sales job ever? A – Don’t wing it. Success leaves clues. Find someone having success, figure out what they are doing and start doing it as well. That can be someone you work with or a sales coach or author. Sales is mostly science, some art. Both of those can be picked up from modeling others having success. Find a process that works and make it your anchor. Very few successful professionals just “wing it”.

Q – What’s a key belief to making it in sales? A –  I actually think this answer applies to life as well as sales. Fake it til you make it! That’s right, Act as if you are already where you want to be. You’ll hear a few versions of this. Like, “Dress for the job you want, not the job you have”. I can guarantee you that my first sales consulting client had no idea they were my first. I’m not saying assume the sale, I am saying assume your role. Play the part. Not only others start to believe it, but your subconscious starts to believe it as well. Confidence is a mental muscle that can be exercised and made stronger. If you don’t believe in yourself, why would anyone else believe in you?

Q – What’s the biggest mistake you see sales-people make? A – talking about what’s important to them, instead of what is important to the prospect. I get so many sales calls and emails from people who tell me they’d LOVE to do a demo of their software or product. Most people don’t care about what you’d love to do, they care about themselves, their issues, their challenges. Sales calls are about the prospect, not about you. Prospecting is about finding need, not discussing features and benefits.

Q – Which Sales books do you recommend? A –  First and foremost, Stephen Covey’s  7 Habits of Highly Effective People is an absolute must read. It may not officially a sales book, but the psychology in it reveals a ton.  Dave Mattson’s The Sandler Rules should be on every sales professional’s bookshelf. It’s a simple but powerful explanation of the right thinking around sales. I think Matthew Dixon’s The Challenger Sale will end up being a huge pivot point for how Sales pros should relate to their clients.