Yes, words certainly do mean things, and they have the power to uplift or destroy, to encourage or to discourage, to bless or to curse, to sell or to receive a resounding no! What’s interesting is that words have the same effect on both the one hearing the words AND the one saying them. So we need to be extremely careful about the words we use, especially in business and sales.
Here are some words I encourage my clients to eliminate from their sales vocabulary:
• “Pitch” – It’s fine for baseball or pine tar. In sales, though, it means throwing out words that are designed to get your prospect to do what you want her to do. Don’t use “sales presentations” either. That suggests a formal meeting where the salesperson is talking about how great his product or service is and trying to get the prospect to buy it. Instead, have “sales conversations” where the salesperson and the prospective client are working together to find solutions for the prospect’s problems or goals.
• “Overcoming, handling or CRUSHING” objections. C’mon now! If you see an obstacle in the way of having what you want and need, do YOU want to be “overcome”? Do YOU want to be “handled”? Do YOU want to be “CRUSHED”? Of course not! All of those words smack of manipulation, of trying to get the prospect to do what you want them to, instead of helping them do what they want to do. So “answer” objections instead. Everyone wants answers that help them get what they want and need!
• “Close, closed or closing” are three more words that have a negative connotation. In everything except sales, “close” means it’s over, we’re done, finished, there is no more, “This is the end my friend,” (Jim Morrison of The Doors). The door or the meeting or the business is closed, and you can’t come in and you can’t do business. The person is “closed” and you can’t communicate with him or her. That’s why, at the end of a sales conversation, so many salespeople disappear rather than following up and staying top of mind. So use words like commitment or commencement or beginning rather than close, and see how it changes your attitude toward the whole process of selling.
Yes, the words you say mean things, and they have power to lift you and your clients up or bring y’all down. Make YOUR sales vocabulary positive, for you and for your prospects.
There are times in our lives, whether we’re trying on clothes or having sales conversations with prospective clients or even working with our clients, that we come to the inescapable conclusion that it just doesn’t fit. There can be any number of reasons a prospective or active client is not a good fit:
• You determine that your product or service won’t really help your prospect or client solve his problem or help her reach her goal.
• The client or prospect isn’t motivated or serious about achieving what he said he wanted.
• The client or prospect is rude or sarcastic or gives you a hard time.
• (Especially for ladies) The prospect is hitting on you and obviously wants more than your product or service, and the feeling isn’t mutual.
• The client refuses to follow instructions or put in the work she needs to do.
• Either you and/or your prospect/client aren’t having fun.
• There’s a personality clash and you don’t really like each other.
It’s one of the most difficult things for salespeople and business owners to do…to accept that a prospect or client isn’t a good fit, no matter how much money he’s willing to pay, and walk away from a sale or a business relationship.
So how can you gracefully “fire” a client or tell a prospective client no? Take full responsibility. Simply say, “You know, after talking (or working) with you, I just don’t feel that what I do is really the best fit for you. I certainly don’t want you to invest your money and time with something that won’t work well for you.” Then refer them to another provider, a book, a website, a workshop, thank them for their time and resume your search for your ideal client.
It’s difficult to do…and the doing will bless you in the short and long runs!
You want to grow your business substantially and reach a level of success that’s important to you. If you’ve been in business for any length of time, you know that you need as much information and advice from qualified, talented, informed sources as you can possibly access. Coaches are a valuable source of expertise and assistance that can help you move forward in your business. There are books, CD’s, DVD’s, seminars, webinars and workshops that you can take advantage of. (I know I shouldn’t end a sentence with a preposition…I’m edumacated!)
I’m writing today’s blog to make you aware of an incredible resource that’s readily available to you, packed with immense value. There’s tips, advice and strategy galore. AND IT DOESN’T COST YOU ONE THIN DIME!!
The Sales Chalk Talk radio show on Blog Talk Radio provides interviews with business leaders from varied walks of life, about sales, marketing, business and success. There are currently 100 shows in the archive at http://bit.ly/SalesChalkTalk. Here’s just a quick overview of the most recent shows:
David Tyreman (WorldFamousCompany.com) is a branding an marketing expert who built a $20 million dollar business after spending the last $20 he had in the world.He’s the author of the award-winning book, “World Famous”. He tells the story of his rise from broke to millions. And THEN he tells us exactly how we can do the same thing in our businesses. What possible reason (excuse) could there be for not investing 90 minutes to listen to that broadcast?
Pamela Herrmann (ReachAcrossTheRegister.com) is a well-known client acquisition and retention expert. She’s one of the most savvy, talented experts in the world of online sales. In fact, she’s so incredible that we’ve invited her back to the show more than any other guest! If you want to find out how to attract more clients and customers, who want to purchase your product or service, this is a must-listen!
My very own time/task management and organization coach, Time Strategy Visionary, Lisa Crilley Mallis (SystemSavvyConsulting.com) shares the information that enabled me to dramatically increase my productivity and reduce my schedule to a 4-day work-week at the same time. Want to get way more done in less time? Better listen!
Leadership and Creativity Expert, Tony Vengrove (MilesFinchInnovation.com), shares wonderful strategies about how you, and everyone else in your business, can become creative, innovative leaders. And that can do nothing but boost your sales, revenues and profits.
Folks, that’s just a small sample of what you can learn…how you can enhance YOUR “edumacation” in business, selling, marketing and success. Check out the Sales Chalk Talk program this week! You’ll be glad you did!!
THE Sales Wizard at
Red Cap Sales Coaching
A few days ago, I was sitting in the coffee shop downstairs from my office here in Sebring, Florida, having a bite to eat at lunchtime. I was at a table close to the window. It started to rain outside…and it was a typical Florida rainstorm, coming down in buckets. No problem, just what it does here! Suddenly, there was a huge flash, and immediately a boom of thunder so loud that it sounded like a a cannon going off next to my ear. The lightning had struck just outside of the building. Everyone in the restaurant jumped or ducked and there were sudden intakes of breath and oohs and aahs. That was simply the first of seven similar lightning strikes right next to, or on, the building!
After the first couple, the reactions of people in the restaurant diminished. And nobody left the building until some time had passed after the last strike, and the sounds of thunder were further off in the distance. The storm passed, nobody was hurt or died and life went on.
Sometimes in our businesses, storms come. There are financial challenges. There are displeased customers. There are problems with employees. Our plans aren’t working out the way we thought they would.
The good news is that if we hold on, wait out the storm, protect ourselves while we need to and then go on about our business, the storm WILL pass. It’s not stormy, filled with thunder and lightning, 24/7 forever. The sun will come out again and you’ll be OK. Hang in there!
By Lisa Crilley Mallis
What task have you been avoiding? (It’s OK – this is a safe place – and honestly, we all have at least ONE!)
Now, if you are thinking, “Come on Lisa, I’m not avoiding anything. For goodness sakes, there are only 24 hours in a day . . . and I’m working for most of them. In fact, I just crossed off 32 tasks on my task list TODAY. How could I possibly be avoiding anything?” You are not alone, and honestly you might be procrastinating! (I know – seems a little unorthodox to equate doing a lot of tasks with procrastinating, but stay with me!)
One of my favorite quotes is from Alfred Montapert. He said, “Don’t confuse motion with progress – a rocking horse keeps moving but doesn’t make progress.”
Or, if we want to be more “official” we can look at the web definition of procrastination, “the act of procrastinating; putting off or delaying or deferring an action to a later time.”
However, since this is my guest blog for THE Sales Wizard – you get my definition today. I define procrastination as doing ANYTHING other than the activity you defined as you #1 activity! (You know – that activity that if you dig REALLY deep, you have been putting off!)
Confusing motion with progress I call “productive procrastination”. This is when we fool ourselves into thinking we are making progress towards our goals because we are busy. However, the truth is we are not actually working on the items that will actually move our business forward! (A big clue that you are suffering from “productive procrastination” is when you have a task list of 20 items, and you do anything BUT the #1 most important item on your list.) Some common “productive procrastination” task:
•Working on a project due next month, instead of the one due tomorrow
•Most paperwork (unless the deadline is NOW!)
•Most cleaning (unless the President of the US, Queen of England, or your mother-in-law is visiting in an hour)
•Surfing the internet for the “perfect image” for your blog post (just find one and use it!)
•Rearranging your files
NOW – here is my disclaimer! I am most certainly NOT advocating never cleaning, never doing paperwork, or never working on projects ahead of time! My hope is to draw your attention to the fact that just because you are busy, doesn’t mean you are making progress!
Good news – if you suffer from “productive procrastination” there are some cures:
•Identify your #1 task each evening. Write this task on a post-it note. Put the post-it note over your task list (covering it up). Complete this task the very first thing when you enter your office (yes – even before email), then look at the other items on your list.
•Schedule one hour each day to do “productive procrastination” tasks. Each time you find yourself slipping into your procrastination mode – remind yourself that you have scheduled time for these tasks. This allows you to stay focused on your #1 priority.
•Set a timer for 5 minutes. http://systemsavvyconsulting.com/time-management-tool-cool-timer/ Allow yourself to do anything you want until the timer goes off. BUT, once the 5 minutes is up – work on your #1 priority until completion.
•Play your “I’m getting motivated to work” song. http://systemsavvyconsulting.com/how-to-get-into-work-mode-even-if-you-work-from-home/ Dance around the room, file papers, clean your desk, fold laundry, surf the internet, whatever. But once the song ends – procrastination time is over – and back to work!
•Use a “work buddy”. Set a deadline to complete your #1 priority and ask your accountability partner to check in with you at the appointed time. If you haven’t finished your task by the agreed upon time . . .
Do you find yourself practicing “productive procrastination”? What strategies have you implemented to stay focused on your #1 priority? I’d love to hear about your success and help you problem solve your challenges. Please post below! I promise, I’ll be stopping back periodically to respond to the comments on this blog . . . so leave one!
Lisa Crilley Mallis, lover of chocolate, the beach, and country music, author of Your Time, Your Life http://dld.bz/ds3Bd and owner of SystemSavvy Consulting, LLC http://www.systemsavvyconsulting.com is a time strategy visionary. She is a master at cutting to the heart of overwhelm to help you regain control of your schedule and experience life. Lisa assists professionals in the direct selling industry implement concrete techniques that can be applied immediately to their daily lives. Her enthusiasm for finding solutions is contagious, and her commitment to empowering you to find success is transformational. You can connect with her on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/systemsavvyconsulting.
Note from THE Sales Wizard:
Lisa is an incredible coach, who has helped me dramatically increase my productivity and decrease my work hours at the same time. I highly recommend that you arrange to chat with her about how you can get the very most out of your time, your business and your life!
THE Sales Wizard at
Red Cap Sales Coaching
Caution: some political commentary here. If that makes you uncomfortable, stop reading now!
As I was driving to work this morning, I was out in the country and was following a busload of migrant laborers on their way to work in the orchards. The bus was towing a trailer with a portable toilet on it. This was a very different honey bucket! On the side facing me was a plastic-covered board that took up the entire outside wall of the toilet, from side to side and top to bottom, and it was completely filled with 8X10 sheets of paper. Well, this is something I’ve never seen before! As they slowed to turn the corner, I got close enough to see that the papers were government-required regulations and notices.
Now I personally found it funny and totally appropriate to have government notices posted on a toilet. And then I thought about about how sad it is that the government thinks that the way we treat our employees, or any other human being, has to be legislated, regulated and enforced. And then I felt frustrated by the government intrusion into our lives and businesses that costs us so much money and time. The government, at this point in time, is the biggest thorn in the flesh of American business. Political correctness has run amok, and there’s no end in sight. They want to regulate every aspect of our lives – what we do and say, what we eat and drink, how we choose to run our businesses, you name it! This is not to say that some laws are not needed. Certainly they are. I just think we have more than enough!
Come on congressmen, senators, president! Enough is enough!
Comments are welcome…and please be nice!
THE Sales Wizard at
Red Cap Sales Coaching
Date: Monday, May 12, 2014
Subject: A Powerful Way To Handle The Spouse Objection
Have you ever had a prospect say:
“Well, everything looks good. But I just have to ask my wife about
“Yes, it is a great offer, but I always discuss things like this with my
Well then these tips can help you.
Shame On You!
As soon as you get that stall, your reaction needs to revert to one pure
shock and utter disappointment. You cannot believe what you are hearing.
Then, very sincerely and almost defeated, come back with something like
“Ah…wow. Um, I really just don’t know what to say, Steve. I mean, I
ah…I really don’t know what to even think about that.”
“What? It’s no big deal. I always talk about things like this with my
“Steve, let me get this straight…you run this business every day, and
make all the decisions every day, is that right?”
“And, you have your finger on the pulse of this business. I mean you know
what is going on every minute; you manage the daily operations, correct?”
“Yes. But like I said, I like to talk to her about things like this.”
“Steve, you know this business inside and out, and more intimately than
anyone on earth can know this business, including your wife. Then, on top
of that, you have me, right here in front of you, giving you ALL of the
information you need to make a informed, intelligent business
decision…AND I’m right here, now, to answer questions.
Now, with all of that, YOU are apparently STILL not able to make a business
So, you are telling me, you are going to go to your wife; who knows
one-tenth of what you know and understand of the needs of YOUR
business…then you are going to give her just a small fraction of the
Steve, I have spent three years learning how to deliver the information I
just gave to you in the last 45 minutes. There is simply no way possible
for you to give her the same information and you will not have all of the
material I have either.
But, you are going to ask your wife; Sarah, right? Who has but a fraction
of the knowledge and understanding of your business, and you are going to
give her but maybe 10% of the information needed to make an educated
And you are going to PUT 100% of the RESPONSIBILITY to make YOUR business
decision on HER shoulders?! Steve, I just cannot believe you would put that
type of PRESSURE on your wife.
I’m shocked and a little disappointed. I’m sorry.”
It’s unbelievable that salespeople are still selling this way in 2014! And what’s even more shocking is that many sales managers, sales coaches and sales trainers are still teaching their salespeople to sell in that way. I implore you, my dear readers, never to employ those kinds of high-pressure tactics! It’s icky and it’s scary, and it’s a truly ineffective way to sell in the 21st century. Learn to have fun, friendly, effective sales conversations that are designed to help your prospect get what he or she wants and not to force, pressure, shame,persuade or trick them into doing what you want them to do.