7 Rules for Great Sales Questions

Hi,

During my tenure in Africa, I had the opportunity to build a great sales team for a CPG business from scratch. It was incumbent on me to transfer my skill sets in sales to my team and that meant accompanying them on sales calls , especially in the early days of their induction into the team and the function.

They observed and they learnt from me- and now I am sharing this with you all.

7 golden rules …7 rules for asking the right questions that deliver results…with some quick examples

  • Rule #1: They flatter the prospect’s ego without seeming smarmy.
    Bad:
    “Where you did you buy that elegant suit?” 
    Better:
    “How did you learn so much about this industry so quickly?”
  • Rule #2: They show respect for the prospect’s unique knowledge.
    Bad:
    “What’s the reporting structure of your department?” 
    Better:
    “What was the thinking behind your organizational structure?”
  • Rule #3: They don’t sound like a question from a job interview.
    Bad:
    “Where did you work before you came here?” 
    Better:
    “How have you been able to use your experience here?”
  • Rule #4: They provide an opportunity for the prospect to expound.
    Bad:
    “Do you have a budget?” 
    Better:
    “What’s the process for securing a budget for this type of product?”
  • Rule #5: They provide a change of pace from the prospect’s day-to-day routine.
    Bad:
    “What are your responsibilities in the organization.” 
    Better:
    “What do you enjoy most about working here?”
  • Rule #6: They provide a smooth launch pad into the next topic.
    Bad:
    “Are my competitors calling on you?”
    Better:
    “Can you step me through your decision-making process?”
  • Rule #7: They build on something the contact just said.
    Bad:
    “Not to change the subject, but are you interested?” 
    Better:
    “Based on what you’ve said, how can we best work together?”

 

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