The (Damn Near) Perfect Sales Call
By all rights, I should’ve quit playing golf in 1998. In August of that year, I hit a hole in one (on the fly!) at the 17th hole at the Dedham Golf and Polo Club, southwest of Boston. Having achieved the goal of the game—to put the ball in the cup in as few shots as possible—a wise man would’ve stopped trying to beat perfection and try his hand at something else.
By all rights, Steven Lee should quit his job as a salesman. Here’s why...
It took smelling salts to revive me after I opened a letter from my health insurance company informing me of my latest annual premium increase. I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised, given the fact that it’s an election year and the industry is busy influencing Congress. Hey, those elected officials don’t come cheap!
At the advice of a friend, I went online to look at other options. I guess I must’ve mindlessly filled out some kind of inquiry document and hit the “submit” button because my phone rang a few moments later and an insurance sales rep by the name of Steven Lee introduced himself. He apologized for calling from his car, but he wanted to connect with me as promptly as possible.
I told Steven that I was shopping for health insurance because mine had gone up significantly, and confessed that I didn’t really know the questions to ask. He talked about the basics, gave me some things to think about and suggested that we meet, promising that the meeting would last no more than an hour.
• Good first impression? Check.
• Prompt response to an inquiry? Check.
• Knowing when to shift from phone credibility to face-to-face appointment? Check.
So far, this guy was doing everything right.
As you can imagine, I’m a tough sell being a sales trainer and all. But Steven had it going on, and I had nothing to complain about.