As an owner or CEO, you may hate the fact that there are sales people who constantly call for your attention. Depending on the situation, however, I believe it is in everybody’s best interest for you to take that call. Dodging them doesn’t make anyone’s life any easier, and it robs you of some great opportunities, like:
1. Opportunity to hire talent
Salespeople who have been in the profession for a while are, for the most part, very good at what they do. If and when they do make contact with you, they may just be the kind of person and talent you are looking for in your own organization. Convincing them to work for you may be the hard part, but if you are confident in their abilities from what you saw first hand on the receiving end, you should be able to accommodate their prerequisites to bring them on board. It’s certainly better than posting a job ad for the out-of-work applicants.
2. Opportunity to learn a new sales tactic
Have you ever been impressed by a certain phrase, rebuttal or strategy? Have you ever been persuaded to do something which you were ultimately happy about? This is usually the result of rugged trial and error on the part of a skilled salesperson. You are likely to come across such tactics naturally by talking to multiple salespeople when they are trying it out on you. Even if it doesn’t work on you, if you were even somewhat amused by it, you can adopt it in your own sales process and learn a new trick, for free, that you otherwise wouldn’t have.
3. Opportunity to learn about competition
In a desperate attempt to make a sale, sometimes salespeople let some competitive information slip out. This may be intentional in an attempt to have you jump on the bandwagon or capitalize on F.O.M.O. (if your competitors are indeed using their solution), but this free data can help you get a leg up on the competition or devise a strategy against such action. If you were to wait to find out such information on the open marketplace, it may already be too late to respond to.
4. Opportunity to make money
Salespeople tend to call with an offer of value. They are selling you a software solution, an industry-specific product, or something of that nature. Typically, it is something brand new with a unique selling proposition (USP). If you are an expert in your field and acutely observant, you should be able to weigh up the pros, cons, and what impact it could have on your business. Sometimes, the product is inferior and would not add any value to your organization. In other instances, it could be a gamechanger, providing the opportunity to boost revenue and gain market share as an early adopter and first mover of the product. However, you’d never know unless you entertain the call in the first place.
We’re all human beings with different jobs to do. No one deserves abuse or ridicule for trying to make a sale. Some salespeople are indeed sleazy and morally questionable, but that does not need to be true across the board. Treat them all with respect, and learn what you can before you hang it up.