What Do Sales and Pirates Have in Common?

relationships sales terms Jun 23, 2017

Allow me a moment to explain my thought process that led to the title for this post.  It’s about converging sales terms and a child’s sense of humor.

The following is an actual conversation between my 7-year-old son and I in the car last week.

Son: Hey Dad, what’s a pirates favorite store?

Me:  I give up what?

Son: Tarrrrrrrrget!  Hey Dad, what is pirates favorite restaurant?

Me: Long John Silvers?

Son: Nope!  Arrrrrrrbys!

You get the gist.  This went on for another 15 minutes, and we both came up with some pretty funny pirate favorites.

Fast forward to the next day.  I am training a new sales person at a local business.  We are working through one last role play for the day, when suddenly she stops, looks at me seriously and says. “What is with all the sales terms that start with the letter ‘R’?”  We spent the next 15 minutes listing as many ‘R’ sales words as possible and discussing the role of each.

And that ladies and gentlemen is how valuable sales content is born.

Here is what we came up with.  Let me know if you can think of any others we missed.

Relationship:  Trust is the backbone of any interaction.  Trust is born out of taking the time to understand and build a relationship with your client or customer.  Golf is fun.  Networking events and groups can be critical.  The truth is social media has forever changed the way information is used to build relationships.  Don’t believe me?  Ask yourself, how did you access this post?  Was it through Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, Twitter, or email subscription?

Rapport:  Rapport is relationships little brother.  If relationships are built over time, rapport is something you seek to establish immediately.  Being comfortable with each other is the easiest way to start the journey of discovery that is learning about their business and their needs.  You can ask the right questions, but without rapport you likely won’t get the whole answer.

Recommend:  I have worked with a lot of sales people who don’t understand the proper way to recommend their products and services.  In sales terms this also called the pitch, the proposal, the presentation etc…  The key to a successful recommendation is making sure you have asked the proper questions.  Through understanding their business you can present your solutions in the manner that will mean the most to them and their needs.

Read Customer:  How does a sales person know their questions are resonating?  How do you know your recommendations are being received the way you want?  Body language, eye contact, and subtle changes in language patterns are a few examples of the ways sales people learn to read their customers and adjust the conversation accordingly.

Relate:  To a certain extent, all sales people are chameleons on some level.  Studies have actually shown that subtly mimicking  the gestures of your counterpart during an interaction will lead to stronger relationships, and thereby greater acceptance of your message.

Response:  My clients will recognize this drill.  Ask question, listen to the answer, take 10 seconds to think about what the customer is actually saying, then respond accordingly.  Preferably with another question.  The hardest part of sales for most sales people is to stop selling long enough to actually engage your client or prospect in a conversation that isn’t about what you are selling.  Master that idea, and you will have success in sales.

I’m sure there are other sales terms which start with the letter ‘R’.  Leave a comment on Facebook or LinkedIn.  I would love to know what they arrrrrrrrre

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