Last night I carried out a coaching call with a friend, tasked with launching a business in a new country, who was quite simply, procrastinating when it came to making sales calls. Put him in front of a prospect, face to face, he’s as happy as Larry, but on the telephone he was feeling like a pest, a rude interruption, and quite frankly he’d rather do any other job than pick up the phone, so that’s what he was doing.
There are some very simple steps to overcoming this problem, the first being, as Richard Branson would say, “Just do it!” Simple advice can often be the hardest to implement, shouldn’t it be more complicated than that? I’m afraid to pick up the phone, well, just pick it up! The more times we do something that makes us uncomfortable, the more comfortable we become, because we can then see that actually, there is nothing to feel uncomfortable about! If you like, we are retraining our mind to believe and know that nothing bad is going to happen whilst we’re on the phone! If we don’t take action, we never move forward. Master Shifu has these wonderful words of wisdom in the new Kung Fu Panda film – “If you only ever do what you can do, you will never be more than you are today.” We have to try the new, stretch ourselves, and just do it sometimes, or it never gets easier.
Alongside taking action, we can also change the way we view a sales call. Begin to think of it as a conversation, with your goal being to help the prospect. If you remove any idea of anything else taking place, it makes it a lot easier to be present and real, and removes worries about what you’re going to say NEXT! Focus on finding out the customer’s problem and see if you are able to help.
Lastly, ask lots of questions. You really don’t want to be talking very much at all in the early stages, you do not need to be selling yourself or your product. You need to uncover your prospect or customer’s needs or problems and this means listening.
Telesales is simple, and like all of life’s simplicities, most of the time we’re overcomplicating things. Be real, be you, help, and listen. Just do it!