Wednesday, 21 June
Today's Topic
Objection Handling

Skill

Those who are best at handling objections are the sellers who observe even the tiniest signals and don’t ignore them. Misperceptions and doubts about your offering exist everywhere, look for them.

Can you turn a "no" into a "yes"? Can you dig through a brick wall with a plastic spoon and find gold? Can you artfully and strategically move a buyer through quicksand of doubt to the bright and firm side of the road? (Work with it, ok!) Can you change a buyer’s negative perception of your offering and influence a favorable decision to buy you?

These questions are the root of objection handling, a core sales skill. To occupy the TOP 10%, you must develop an ability to regularly and successfully identify and work through buyer objections. To grow your objection-handling skills, understand buyers won’t willingly hand them to you. You have to pull them into the light.

Successful objection handling includes equal doses of technique, instinct, and courage.

Above everything else, you must proactively surface objections on every customer interaction. That’s the technique part.

Plus, it would be best if you honed your instinct of recognizing the signs that invite the optimal time to address the issues. This instinct will help you address issues before they evolve into unsolvable objections.

And yes, it’s appreciated that for many, asking direct questions that yield potential conflict and problems is hard…and feels counterintuitive. But you know your offering isn’t perfect, and your prospect will, over time, develop objections as they get to know you better. Those are merely the laws of nature at work. Don’t ignore reality; summon the courage to shine a light on issues you know are seedlings of objections.

You’ve seen the movie before; you know what happens in the next scene. Calculate your moves accordingly.

Do

The best hitters in baseball get into the Hall of Fame with a 30% success rate. You shouldn’t expect to overcome every objection, but you should expect to try hard on all of them. Take a swing.

List the common objections regarding your offering or service that you frequently hear.

Usually, the first few objections flow quickly, but it might take a few revisits to your notebook before you list everything. That’s okay. This exercise is about getting everything "on paper" that you know exists about your offering’s vulnerabilities. If you have a challenge deciding whether an "issue" is an objection or an obstacle (they are different), don’t worry about that now…write everything down.

To grow your skills, you need first to list and stare; you need to see things visually to be then able to create solutions and eventually converse with your customers about them.

Surfacing objections is the foundation of objection handling (OH). You can’t address that which you don’t know about. Therefore, listing your offering’s "issues" is not just about giving you a worksheet to record the solutions; it’s also intended to provide a menu to use when addressing customer issues. Here’s an example: "C’mon, Joe, I know you feel some hesitation behind us doing business….is it because of X, or maybe it’s because of Y….what about Z?" You can see the logic in baiting your customer into telling you what’s on their mind…and the best way to do that is to prompt them.

Since, by now, you’ve successfully listed all objections, it’s time to rate them according to weight and frequency. First, in column B, assign each objection a 1, 2, or 3 to designate how heavy (i.e., hard to solve) the objection is. The hardest-to-solve objections get a 1. Next, frequency. In column C, rate each complaint according to how frequently you hear it.

The point of the exercise is to get you to spend most of your time working with the 1s…if you rate an objection with a 1 for weight and frequency, it’s pretty clear you need to spend time developing a strategy behind that issue. This doesn’t mean you won’t deal with the 3s, but you must master the ones at the top of both columns.

You won’t solve every objection for every buyer, but at least you can try; the trial starts with bringing the buyer’s issues and complaints into the open, where two people can calmly discuss them.

Tomorrow - June 20

"Buyer, I object to your stupid objection."

Today - June 19

Didn't we JUST have a weekly sales meeting last week???

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June 18

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June 17

Whadya mean, you're not killing it right now?

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"If you find a path with no obstacles, it probably doesn’t lead anywhere." Frank A. Clark (American businessman and lawyer.)

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