NO is the second-best answer! …..First In A Series on Getting to YES!
From a professional salesperson’s perspective, “NO” is the second-best answer. Certainly, we all seek a YES, however it is unreasonable to expect 100% YES’s in any endeavor, especially in professional selling.
Having the pleasure of working with several extremely talented Professional Salespeople, I once heard the following response when asking if the Pro was in a slump. “I have not been told NO so many times since trying to get a date to the Freshman High School Prom!” When asked if he secured a date to the Prom, the response was exactly as expected…..YES! Here is the process that he followed:
As discussed in previous posts defining “Open & Closed-Ended Questions,” at the proper time when we ask the Closed-Ended question, “Will you Buy this…?” it is typically answered with a YES or a NO. With the YES we are delighted, however the NO should be interpreted not as failure, just another step in our quest for a YES.
When you hear NO to a decision-required question, all that is required next in order to get closer to a YES is a single-word, open-ended question, “WHY?” We must learn to put our full attention to the response for many clues can be obtained not only WHAT is said, but HOW it is said (more about body language in the future). Every NO is because of an OBJECTION in the prospect’s mind keeping them from a decision or saying YES. It is our job to figure out a means to overcome the NO and turn it into a YES!
OBJECTIONS to saying YES can be extremely simple as well as overly complex. Clearly, the easy ones lead to YES sooner, while complex objections may require one, two, or even more follow-ups to overcome. In no case should be ever give up, but if a well-qualified prospect (see previous post on defining “Qualified”) has declined your offer after attempting to overcome the OBJECTIONS three or more times, it may be time to move on until circumstances change; for you and your product/service or for the prospect’s state of mind.
As you gain experience in QUALIFYING your prospects, honing your PRESENTATION skills, perfecting your timing on when to ask OPEN & CLOSED-Ended questions, and overcoming the fear to simply ASK FOR THE YES, your percentages of YES’s will outshine your NO’s!
So how did the Pro get his date to the Prom? When hearing his first NO and asking the candidate WHY? she simply said, “I already have a date.” No need to overcome that objection…on to the next candidate that declined the proposal and when asked WHY? she simply said, “I will be out of town.” Get the drift?
Until you know the reason WHY you are getting a NO, you may bang your head against the wall and self-diagnose yourself as a failure. For the Pro, his date to the Prom first said NO, and her answer to his one-word question WHY? was simply, “I cannot accept a date with you until my parents have met you. If that goes well, then you will have a date to the Prom!”….and it did go well!
Getting to YES!
Remember…..There is No Secret – It is a Process!