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We all know that sales people are on the phone or emailing to drum up business, but you need to connect with a person on a human level, make them comfortable and then talk business.


Recently, I was approached by a salesperson who offered a service for my business. It wasn’t difficult to pinpoint the 5 things that you shouldn’t do when approaching a potential client.

While the introduction email was intriguing, the follow-up and the process following my response that I could be interested in the service lacked substance and quality.

  1. Don’t suggest an in-person meeting first

    I responded to the sales person that I was interested in talking and that I was open the next day at 2 pm. The next email stated that he would come to my office at that time. Not what I suggested and also not something I would recommend to a sales person. Sales is a process and we need to warm up to a person. Unless there is a clear need defined (which was not the case), why would you waste your or your prospect’s time with an in-person meeting? Do a conference call first, identify a need and then set-up an in-person meeting if it’s appropriate.

  2. Don’t just call

    So, I told the sales person that I thought a conference call was more appropriate as a first step. Then a couple of hours my phone rings and the person just calls. I was in the middle of doing something and kindly requested that we keep the date and time that we had arranged.

  3. Don’t call from your cell phone

    The next day, the person calls me from his cell phone with bad reception. Not very professional and certainly annoying.

  4. Don’t look for a fit if there is none

    Once we started talking it was very obvious that there was no fit. My service is suited for a global offering and his offering targeted companies that offer local services.

  5. In closing. Be personal. Don’t try to sell.

    We all know that sales people are on the phone or emailing to drum up business, but you need to connect with a person on a human level, make them comfortable and then talk business. Once you have established rapport, it’s much easier to have a conversation and you will be meeting a defined need..

About the author

Monika D'Agostino

Monika D'Agostino

I’m Monika D’Agostino, the founder and Chief Sales Officer at Consultative Sales Academy. Born…

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