An old saying “under promise and over
deliver” has a tendency to fall short with sales people. In an effort to win
over a prospect or client, sales people oftentimes embellish when giving their
pitch. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it likely is, yet sales
people still take this approach.
I pride myself on being mindful and very
careful that my words are simply a representation of my company. Whatever I
promise in a meeting oftentimes must be delivered by my team. Therefore, I tend
to be much more cautious when describing my firm, our services, and what the
client should expect in the end.
I’ve fielded a few phone calls recently
by clients that were overpromised by either a sales rep and even in one case by
our sales manager. It wasn’t a stretch of the imagination so much as it was how
much emphasis was placed on delivery of service. Timeframes were tight and
budgets even tighter, and in both cases, my sales people gave the clients the
old “no problem we’ve got it”. Unfortunately, that was a theme they chose to
lead with in the sales process, and no matter how much complexity crept into
the project, “no problem we’ve got it”.
Our internal team was none-to-pleased to
find out that unrealistic deadlines were being imposed by their own sales
people. And, the fact that the client would have accepted an additional amount
of time from the beginning, this put a burden on our resources which simply did
not have to happen.
Being enthusiastic in a sales role is a
requirement for success. But, being enthusiastic doesn’t mean giving in to any
sort of unrealistic requests or demands from a client, so be on your toes.
Practice how best to pitch realistic pricing, deadlines for delivery, and
rebuttals to concerns raised. Speaking from experience a client is much more
appreciative when given realistic information rather than being overpromised.