Your inside showroom sales person is finishing up a great meeting, their client is nodding like a bobble head and a HUGE order is now in play. Then, the sales person says goodbye and walks straight to their terminal to check their email and text messages. What? With all that knowledge and information flowing fresh in their mind, they shift gears and go to email?
And yes, many outside sales people do the same thing. They give a killer presentation at a top design firm’s office, then wander back to their car, checking email and text messages. Once done with that task, they simply start their car and drive to the next appointment. AGGHHH! Maybe, just maybe, they will review their notes and meeting memories before they go to bed tonight.
As both persons described above fiddle with their email and text messages, all that profitable information from their sales calls begins to diminish. Honestly, we really have to save all those wonderful stories, action items and product notes noted ASAP in order to be completely accurate. Sure, they took “detailed” meeting notes, but no one can write everything completely and correctly. Good sales people are listening, thinking and talking. With all that going on, even the best sales people will miss valuable pieces of information.
Our short-term memory is designed to help us survive life-or-death circumstances – it is not programmed to recall that the designer we talked to is starting a large job in November. That has no short-term value and your brain knows that, so the memory can very well slip away. Everyone needs to make it a habit to stop and review their notes, both written and remembered, and if remembered, that important information should be recorded as quickly as possible.
At your next sales meeting, take a moment to work with your associates to try and break this habit. Many may most likely fire back that they have to make sure their other customers have not been trying to reach them with a monumental catastrophe. The simple response is that the just-concluded meeting may have taken a few hours, so another 30 minutes shouldn’t make a difference. However, if the meeting notes are incorrect or incomplete, they might indeed be creating a monumental catastrophe for the future.Endeavor to make it a habit that your sales team always takes the time after a meeting, call or training session to review and edit their notes. Then give it one more go-over. Now, they are set up to slam dunk this opportunity.
Also published on the Decorative Plumbing & Hardware Association’s Connection s Blog: Welcomed Thoughts from a Fellow (Jeff Valles): Do Your Sales People Really Have All The Story?