'People buy from People' ... Duh!
A recent post on social media triggered the usual ‘duh!’ reaction in me as soon as I saw it. It’s one of my major bug-bears (as any sales candidate who has ever uttered the phrase to me will know).
‘People buy from people’ must be in the top 5 of useless statements that sales candidates come up with in interviews.
I’ve heard it countless times …. ‘People buy from People’ Really now? How absolutely dynamic and refreshing of you to say that. Not!
The statement itself is obvious enough – after all, people are at the heart of what we do in all areas of our life – people run the world and all in it and, until another species in the Animal Kingdom challenges us for world domination, people will continue to buy from people.
What irritates me, though, is that it is a totally unqualified statement.
If I am to infer that People buy from ‘you’, why is that? Invariably, when I’ve challenged a candidate, this is followed up by the single-most irritating nugget ‘because they like me’ or ‘all my customers like me’.
Now understand this: The intelligent buyer will not buy from your sales rep just because they ‘like’ him/her. Your sales rep needs to have a lot more going on before a client is going to part with their budget.
A case in point is myself. My clients don’t entrust their business challenges to me because I’m a ‘nice gal’ – no – it’s because they trust me. They know that with my experience and expertise I have the knowledge, integrity and passion to provide solutions that help grow their businesses. They wouldn’t engage me if they didn’t believe that.
‘Likeability’ can be viewed in the same light as one of Maslow’s hygiene factors – we expect sales people to be nice or likeable – but that’s not the whole game.
Sales Leaders who are impressed by the ‘like me’ nugget coming from a candidate’s lips during interview are assessing suitability for the role based on totally the wrong criteria. Ever wonder why some of your team aren’t hitting their sales targets?
Relying solely on likeability factor is missing a trick – a big one – most people can be ‘nice’ … it doesn’t mean they can actually sell. Truly successful sales people have sales in their make-up so it makes business sense to apply a little science to sales recruitment and when looking to improve the efficiency of sales teams. Sales-specific assessments and analysis remove the guesswork.
So, for a bit of fun, lets see how we can build on this statement – add your addition in the comments box below …
I’ll start it off ...
People buy from People ….
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