Customers Love to Buy so Why Do Salespeople Struggle to Sell Them?

Posted by Dave Kurlan on Mon, Oct 02, 2017 @ 06:10 AM

Image Copyright iStock Photos

Image Copyright iStock Photos

I just returned from the local car dealer.

Have you ever noticed how happy people are when they are buying things?  What about you?  How did you feel the last time you took delivery of your new car?  Was it the new car smell?  The finish?  The wheels?  The look?  The brand?  What about the last time you bought a new smartphone, tablet or notebook computer?  And how happy were you when you moved into your house or apartment?  When you installed the swimming pool, bought the boat, renovated the kitchen, painted the house, bought new furniture, the flat screen TV, or a new wardrobe?  Happy buying extends to vacations and even sporting goods.  It never ends!  The excitement from these purchases tends to last much longer than the moments themselves.  

So if we all love buying stuff, why do salespeople struggle so much when they try to sell stuff?  Why isn't it as friction-free as an abundance of happy buyers would suggest it should be?

There are at least 13 reasons for this:

  1. Many salespeople try too hard to sell instead of helping people buy
  2. Many salespeople try to sell stuff that some people don't want or need
  3. The B2B buying experience is different from the B2C buying experience
  4. Many salespeople and customers don't have the same goals
  5. Many salespeople put their own interests ahead of those of their customers
  6. Many salespeople don't know how to lower their customer's resistance
  7. Most salespeople are predictable and obvious and their customers hate it
  8. Most salespeople don't know how to have a real conversation about issues and the impact of those issues
  9. Most B2B salespeople don't know how to make the B2B conversation personal and fail to get their business customers to the happy place that consumers get to
  10. Most salespeople are absolute amateurs when it comes to the consultative approach to selling, the only approach that makes it personal
  11. Most salespeople aren't able to sell value with any degree of effectiveness so the buyer-seller conversation ends up focused on price
  12. Most salespeople don't take the time to develop relationships
  13. Salespeople are ineffective at getting and setting realistic expectations

There are more reasons but I'm equally sure you get the gist of this.  How can you make the B2B experience more pleasant, helpful, personal and value-based and less about your goals and needs, which raise resistance?  Need help accomplishing this? 


Conflict Is Useful

This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-SA

This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-SA

By Lisa Kohn | Conflict Management 

From the moment we wake up, we can be – and often are – in conflict with others. With our family members over how the day will go, with team members about the best next step on a project, with our manager over how to implement a new process, with colleagues about budget issues, with the person on line in front of you who is taking too long to order…the list goes on. Conflict is unavoidable and generally unenjoyable. And if mishandled it can negatively impact the results we’re trying to achieve and ruin our day…or our week.

But conflict is not a bad thing, even though it feels so bad. In fact, it’s necessary and important. It brings out ideas that might not get thought of and strengthens proposals before they’re proposed – but only when it’s handled in ways that heighten the positives and lessen the negatives. So how do we  work through conflict  in a way that works?

There are a few simple, but not so easy, steps to take that can help make conflict more effective and productive. They may seem tough, or nearly impossible, in the moment when our emotions are flaring and frustration and reaction seem to be the only choices, but these five steps are possible:

  • Remember what you really want – We can get so caught up in the fight that we forget what we’re fighting for. And sometimes we’re fighting against each other, without realizing we’re fighting for the same thing. It’s important to be clear, and to clearly share, what it is we really want and need. So that we remember and other people know.
  • Take a step back – Many of us are driven to react immediately, if not sooner, to conflict, when what we (or the other person) really need is to count to ten – or one hundred – and pause…so that we can respond and not just react. So that we can be Thoughtful and take a next action or share a next word that will help cool the conflict so that we can find a solution.
  • But not too far back – Those of us who aren’t driven to immediate reaction might be driving as far away as we possibly can. That doesn’t help either. While it’s important to not react in a fit of anger, it’s also important not to disengage entirely. Stay present, even if you step out of the room to cool down. Don’t ignore or avoid the conflict – deal with it or it will never go away.
  • Get in their shoes – One of the most effective ways to dissolve conflict is to see it from the other person’s perspective. To stand in their shoes. Why do they want what they want? What are they facing? What pressure are they under? What’s important to them? What’s their experience? When you can see and understand a situation from your “opponent’s” point of view, you can move away from taking things personally and be more willing to meet them in a place that may work for both of you.
  • Get on the same side of the problem – The most effective way to solve a problem is to get together to solve a problem. Instead of fighting over whether there is a problem, or what the problem is, or whose fault it all is, or who should give in first – when you can work with someone to solve the problem (rather than against them to win) you have more chance of figuring things out and coming up with the win-win solution that meets most needs.

Conflict is unavoidable and usually unenjoyable, but it can be handled well and it can yield great results. One of the best ways to accomplish this and get beyond conflict to results instead is to consider the Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team workshop.  Read more here.

Doodle: Easy Scheduling

Tired of going back and forth trying to schedule a meeting, corporate events, or even personal events? Doodle is a scheduling app and website that makes it easy to find a time when a group of people can get together. It's a time-saver and productivity booster for everyone! It's free to use, though bonus features in the premium subscription are a great addition for business users.

The free account gives you all the basics you need to schedule a get-together with a group of people. You can create polls, invite others to participate in them, edit them, see the results, and so forth. There are no limits on how many polls you can create, either.

Doodle Ipad.png

Going Paperless With Evernote [Webinar]

Evernote has become one of the most popular productivity apps available. It is an organizer, note taker, and storer of digital files and photos. It syncs across all of your devices so that no matter where you go, your notes are always with you.  Say goodbye to the days of carrying around files and notepads.

Terms such as "Geo-tags" and "Parent Folders" may be overwhelming at first. However, with these tools, Evernote includes an excellent search function that lets you find anything you've uploaded to your account. This gives you more ways to keep a handle on all your notes, no matter how organized or disorganized you are.

Today we are sharing a webinar on how to make your home and/or office paperless with Evernote. It's time to streamline your workflow and increase your productivity.

Click here for even more tips and use cases about Evernote.


Try Scannable. Scannable turns any iPhone or iPad into a mobile scanner, capturing the paper in your life quickly and beautifully. Use it (or the camera feature built into Evernote on your mobile device) to collect everything from instruction manuals, the kids’ homework, and bank statements to work documents and meetings notes.