Wherever Missy went, she left money on the table. She did this unconsciously, not realizing the dollar bills that wished to follow her home. It wasn’t that she was careless with her resources or that she had no interest in material goods. She just never realized how much a customer could buy if she simply asked.

A Walking Encyclopedia

Like many people in direct sales, Missy loved the products she represented. She was excited by the health benefits she had experienced with them and was eager to tell others — tell being the operative word. So she learned everything she could about supplements, ingredients, the current condition of the healthcare industry, and the company’s research. She became a walking encyclopedia. Still, she wondered if she had enough information for potential customers.

Missy followed her company’s suggested protocol for finding prospects and educating them. She organized home get-togethers where she demonstrated the products. At every presentation, she started with a documentary about the present state of health care in the country and the company’s solutions. It was engaging and comprehensive. Then she would discuss each supplement and what it was designed to do. Despite these efforts, repeatedly she met with lackluster results. What went wrong?

The Double-Feature Failure

Two issues impeded Missy’s progress. First, the majority of her prospects had limited interest in the information she offered. She failed to read their signals. The more information she provided, the more they got turned off and disconnected.

Second, she didn’t ask. Not wishing to come across as pushy and aggressive, she simply “rested her case” after presenting the “evidence” of the nutritional solution. Like many people with her personality style, she thought that providing education was sufficient to prompt people to make a buying decision. She had no idea that many individuals need a direct invitation to make a purchase.

In addition, those people that did buy one item could have acquired more had Missy sought their business. Being grateful (and relieved) with a small purchase, she stopped rather than inquire what other items they might like. Bottom line: her commission check was slim when it could have been more substantial.

Learning how to diagnose and match behavioral styles would put more money in Missy’s purse. It would have helped her build rapport quickly and authentically with more of her prospects. Moreover, it would have given her an insight about the challenges she faces in making sales so that she can improve her closing ratios and enjoy abundance.

About Dr. Nancy Zare

A psychologist and retired professor, Dr. Nancy Zare has dedicated her life to helping people communicate more effectively. She earned her masters and doctorate from Boston College, and is past president of the National Speakers Association of New England. She is the author of the books, Workplace Hostility, Myth and Reality, and Closing More Sales: Introduction to AlikeAbility™ as well as numerous articles.

From her experience in both business to business and business to consumer sales, Nancy founded Rapport Builderz in 2012. It provides training, coaching and consultation for selling professional services. She originated the AlikeAbility™ System to teach people how to read personality styles, build better relationships, and generate more business. Learn more about your selling style and its strengths and liabilities by requesting your complimentary copy of the AlikeAbility™ Assessment.