Sales Obstacles Are Really Opportunities

In the printing industry, many salespeople see obstacles as objections and view them in a negative light. They view obstacles as things that get in the way of what they are trying to accomplish. Many salespersons have been taught (through good or bad training) how to “overcome an objection.” Assuming such training was good, then learning how to overcome an objection is good. And, if you’re satisfied with just being good then read no further.

However, because I am a person who is never satisfied with the status quo, let’s focus on how to get even better. To be a great salesperson, one must anticipate objections before they even occur. A great salesperson has already thought through a number of scenarios (in advance) of what might occur in any situation. They have well-developed intuition and are seldom caught off guard. This is why so many printing companies seek to “hire away” such sales reps from a competitor. You know the adage: Why develop a good “farm system” of salespeople when you can just steal them away. They are great for a reason. Instead of trying to “pick them off” focus on developing great salespeople yourself.

Great salespeople know that there is a solution behind every “problem” and see obstacles as being nothing more than opportunities. They know there is always another option and they also outthink their competition. They don’t merely think outside the box; in reality, they don’t even notice the confines of a box. Such salespersons are deep thinkers who look at an issue from many angles. They ask smart questions, listen and are always prepared. They possess strong emotional intelligence and notice even the smallest nuance of a human interaction.

In my consulting work with printing companies, the great salespersons are up for the challenge of any obstacle that is thrown their way. In fact, they relish such a challenge. In contrast, the salespersons that struggle like to complain, tell me why things will not work, what they don’t have and what they need. Simply said, they do not believe they are better than their competition, see obstacles as negative and do not provide or convey value.

Ryan T. Sauers is president of Sauers Consulting Strategies. The firm consults with the front end of privately held printing and related organizations across North America. The areas of focus are: sales growth, brand positioning, organizational strategy, and integrated marketing (with an emphasis on social media). Sauers speaks at many national events and writes feature articles in global publications. He is an adjunct university professor teaching leadership and entrepreneurship. Sauers is also the author of the best-selling book "Everyone is in Sales" and the newest book "Would You Buy from You?" Please visit:
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