Here is the official “Julia Ewert” list of the 10 Sales Commandments.
Look though and see how often you commit a sales sin and learn what you should be doing instead.
- Thou shalt not believe that sales is not necessary for professional services businesses
Instead, not only acknowledge, but accept that sales is essential if you want to increase revenue in your business. Hiding away from it, or calling salespeople something obscure like “business development executive ”, or “customer experience manager” only adds to the fact you’re hiding away from the most essential business skill.
2. Thou shalt not “show up and throw up” all over the prospect
(which means you ‘vomit’ your greatness all over someone as soon as you start the meeting)
Instead, turn up with an objective to make your conversation less about you and more about your partner so you can learn about what they are trying to achieve.
3. Thou shalt not ask closed question after closed question just to gather fast facts
Closed questions will give your partner the impression you don’t really care about them – even if you do. Because they allow for speed, your partner will not feel valued or heard.
Instead, ask high quality, open style questions which are designed so that you use a minimal word count, in order to illicit maximum word count answers in response.
4. Thou shalt not fill in the silence by repeating the question or giving multiple choice answers
Just. Be. Silent. I’ve gone back and checked all the deaths that have ever occurred throughout the history of time. No one has ever died from an awkward silence*.
After you ask your high quality open style question…. Shut up.
5. Thou shalt not handle objections by throwing in more value
Adding value once you’ve received an objection is a terrible strategy. It not only looks desperate, but you’re also inadvertently telling someone they are wrong because, how could they not see why you are amazing?
6. Thou shalt not forget to follow up
80% of new business in professional services is converted after the proposal stage. I’ll let you absorb that for a minute.
7. Thou shalt not conduct follow up via email
Follow up via email is a rookie’s game. You’re not a rookie. I know you want to convert more business so the most successful way to do this is to pick up the phone.
Like commandment 4. No one ever died from making a phone call.
8. Thou shalt not turn up unprepared for a sales conversation with ‘hope’ as your main strategy
‘Hope’ is as equally a terrible strategy as is ‘luck’. You can take all the hope and luck out of your sales conversations by having a sales process. This is designed to give you a repeatable formula for what to say and when to say it in the conversation. Doing these things in the wrong order, means you’ll have a lower conversion ratio.
9. Thou shalt not store customer data anywhere other than in a CRM
A CRM is by far, the best place for you to store customer data. In you head, your emails or an Excel sheet is not a great idea.
Tip for new players: BEWARE. Most CRMS are designed for marketing capability, not for sales capability, so ensure you have one that helps you maximise your new business opportunities.
10. Thou shalt not wait for the phone to ring for new business
Instead, talk to people and meet people. I set myself a KPI of talking to 48 new people every quarter. This ensures that I’m never scrounging around for my next client. This is a great strategy that anyone can apply.
*I may or may not have checked all the deaths, I just asked around a few people to see if they had ever heard of anyone who had died from strategic silence in a conversation.