The Margin of Error
The margin of error in many professions can be minuscule at best. In sports the margin of error, or the difference between winning and losing, sometimes comes down to a matter of inches or fractions of a second. In business, the difference between profit and loss could be fractions of a single percentage point. In every profession there is a distinct line between a win or lose situation, that we don’t want to cross.
In many other professions, the job is either done right or it is done wrong. There is absolutely no margin for error. The automobile mechanic either fixes the problem, or the car doesn’t run right. The pilot either has a safe take-off and landing, or he doesn’t. The doctor makes the proper diagnosis, or she doesn’t.
The same holds true in sales. Either you make the sale, or you don’t. If you don’t make the sale, somebody else will. What is the margin of error in a sales presentation? The difference between winning and losing the customer could boil down to a single word or phrase. A sale could be made or lost because a single question was or was not asked. The difference could be what you did or did not say. The difference could be what you did and did not hear. Success in sales comes with your ability to listen and communicate a message to satisfy a customer’s need. It is just that simple. If you miss something the customer said, or you don’t address an issue of importance to the customer, you may lose the sale.
Look at every selling opportunity and ask yourself: What did I do right? What did I do wrong? In today’s environment, it may just be a matter of a question, a phrase, or a minuscule word, that creates a margin of error, a win or loss. Every lost customer, or lost sale could make all the difference in the bottom line success or failure of you and your company. It is time to sweat the small stuff and make a difference.
Brad Huisken is President of IAS Training and author of I'm a Salesman, Not a Ph.D.! and Munchies for Salespeople
Copyright 2010 Author retains ownership. All Rights Reserved.