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Sales Coaching

Why prospecting is so frustrating for new reps

New sale reps are eager to sell and open new accounts. Suspects they call on, are often eager to get rid of the young pup because they are busy and see no value in spending their time with them. Rather than be rude and tell them to leave, most try to be polite and kind and opt for a more subtle technique, to rid themselves of the perceived time waster.

Usually, suspects offer up a brush off of some kind. They say something like, “I’m busy now so call me in a few weeks.” Another brush off is “we are happy with our current supplier and don’t want to change.” But the one I think is most harmful to the inexperienced rep is, “Just send me a quote and we will look it over.”

This brush off wastes a lot of time and leads to frustration for the new rep.

How do most new reps respond to this offer to receive a quote?

Most of the time the new rep salivates at the opportunity to do the quote! Why wouldn’t they? Isn’t this a clear buying signal? In their mind, it is. But not really.

So what do they do? They run to their supervisor or sales support rep with a tremendous amount of enthusiasm, and a strong sense of urgency, and ask for help in turning around a quote for this hot prospect.

While we all admire the enthusiasm demonstrated by the new rep, the truth is, this is usually a colossal waste of time. The potential customer has not given any reason why they will change after the quote is submitted. No pain points have been shared, nor has any sort of commitment to switch been suggested.

So what happens? The rep hustles and gets the quote together, usually with help from his support team, and rushes it back to the person he hopes to sell. The person says I will take a look at it. The rep thanks them profusely and leaves.

Then the agonizing series of phone calls, emails, and drop byes begin by the rep, in hopes of getting things going. Usually, the rep gets some excuses or no response at all from the suspect. After a short time, frustration sets in and the rep goes away.

Mission accomplished by the end user! They have gotten rid of this pesty salesperson.

The next article will offer a better path for the new rep to follow.

About Louie Davis

Sales Leader and Coach Vice President of Sales at Central Paper Company Birmingham, Alabama President +Plus Sales Training and Coaching


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