Lame Bullshit Excuses

Objections are accepted by the majority of sales reps as a natural part of the sales process. The assumption is that they arise in the mind of the prospect. In fact they are often internally generated excuses in the guise of objections, in an attempt to somehow legitimize them. Thus pardoning the rep his failures while conveniently allowing him a few successes if he gets lucky. He can even brag about how he beat the odds, did the impossible, and slayed the dragon, even though the dragon was ferocious and spit fire at him.

Any possible excuse as to why a sale “can’t” be made will eventually be discovered and proffered by at least one sales rep in a team. The rep will sell himself on this excuse. Will embrace it. Will make it part of him. He will own that excuse and cling to it as if to life itself. Nothing can break the pit-bull like grip.

The concept filters down from the conscious into the subconscious mind. The subconscious mind believes what it is told. It takes over, and in the future whenever the trigger for the excuse arises, it reacts emotionally and panics and invokes the excuse as a way to protect the ego.

It’s not “my” fault. It’s because of X, which I have no control over. It helps if X is impossible to overcome. Like a competitor’s features or pricing or the economy.

This condition may be terminal.

An example is the so-called “objection” that the price is “too high.” The reps may hear this objection bandied about. She has nothing in her kit so far to counter it with. She comes to believe that all those people telling her that the price is too high can’t all be wrong. Perhaps they are right. Other companies seem to have lower prices. She has claimed that excuse as her own.

Instead of selling the prospects on the value of her product, she has been sold by them that her price is too high.

The only way to displace the excuse is to get the rep to disown it and substitute a way to overcome that objection. As in psychotherapy, this may take some time. It doesn’t have to. Change can be instantaneous upon the realization that the concept owns you instead of the other way around. You decide to disown that false concept. You are then free.

Most likely to glom onto some other excuse. It can be an addiction. It must be wonderful never to be at fault. Never having to admit a deficiency. If this is the case, the cycle of disowning the excuse must be repeated. Doing this repeatedly will train not just the conscious mind but the subconscious which then forms a new habit. That of refusing to use excuses as a crutch, and to immediately disown any that have found their way past the defenses set up to prevent their acceptance.

Closers “know” that there is always a way to make sales happen. While any one prospect may be lost, more will buy. The closer knows that he can eventually overcome all significant objections most of the time and guarantee his success. Notice that I did not say “any” objection “all” the time. That is unrealistic, ridiculous, and not necessary for success. The laws of probability are on his side. He will abide no excuses by himself nor listen to those others try to sell him.

A closer welcomes not objections, but the questions that prospects ask as opportunities to further communicate and clarify, to transfer the enthusiasm that is the definition of selling.

The List

Perhaps you have heard a good one from a rep. Or used one yourself. Enjoy!

  • No leads.
  • Leads are bad.
  • Price too high.
  • Prospects are too busy.
  • Can’t get past gatekeepers.
  • Economy bad.
  • Our product is too expensive.
  • Our products lacks features competitor has.
  • Our company not as big, well known, established as competition.
  • Not enough training.
  • Manager is incompetent.
  • Manager hates me and plays favorites.
  • Company is mismanaged.
  • Commission rate too low.

A Top 1% rep responds:
No leads?
Get referrals on every call, generate own leads, or simply cold call.

Leads are bad.
Maybe you can’t close?

Price too high.
I like high prices since I get a percentage of the higher number. If you can’t establish value than any price is “too high.”

Prospects are too busy.
Good. Busy prospects run successful companies and have money to invest. They can find time for worthwhile calls. Learn how to position your call so it is perceived as important and urgent and you will be up at bat.

Can’t get past gatekeepers.
As above but also get them on your side and gain intelligence by doing a brief presentation and asking lots of questions.

Economy bad.
So what! You aren’t running the country, just selling a specific product. The more you sell the better the economy gets.

Our product is too expensive.
No value = price too high.

Our products lacks features competitor has.
Ask why that minor feature is so important, it usually isn’t.

Our company not as big, well known, established as competition.
Microsoft started in a dorm room at Harvard.

Not enough training.
Have you tried asking for help? Do you deserve help?

Manager is incompetent.
It’s easy to call the boss names, harder to do her job. And even if true does this excuse you from making sales happen?

Manager hates me and plays favorites.
Do your checks cash? Also, if you were the top producer my bet is your manager will quickly want to be your best friend.

Company is mismanaged.
Deal with it, help fix it, or quit to join a better one.

Commission rate too low.
More sales is always more money. Sell more deals.