Back to Back Issues Page newsletter, January 2009
January 29, 2009

Coach Your Team
How to Overcome Objections


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Volume VII - January, 2009 Issue

  1. Lessons-in-Leadership
    • Coach Your Team - Objections Are NEVER a "No!"
  2. New Tools, Resources & Ideas
    • Objections Workshop
    • ALERT New Release! - 10 Days to New Income
  3. Reader Meter
    • Reader Feedback

Lessons In Leadership

Coach Your Team
Objections Are NEVER a "No!"

"No one ever allowed objections to get in his way to success."
- Dave Del Dotto

Our most important role as a leader, is that of “COACH”.

No one thing adds more credibility to a leader than when he or she takes time to be out in the field, down in the trenches, and working right along side his/her employees.

As we progress through this new year, and begin to address the many challenges stemming from our current economic climate, it is critical that leaders work to support their team by helping them to anticipate and overcome customer objections.

Regardless of what industry you lead, common objections most likely include:

  • No time / Inconvenient to change
  • Too costly to switch vendors
  • Happy with current vendor
  • Already have best price available

Most objections are made before a sales rep even has the opportunity to make a formal presentation, so it is essential that your team members are well scripted to overcome common objections on the spot.

Your sales people should understand that most objections stem from a lack of information. Therefore, great salespeople take time to first educate the customer before ever asking for the sale.

In most instances, an objection is simply a clue that the client needs more information. An objection is NEVER a “No”.

Coach your sales staff to treat every objection as if the client just said, “I do not fully understand what you are offering or how I can benefit from it – I need more information.”

If your sales team can create this discipline in their mind, they can focus more squarely on anticipating what objections they will hear in the field and how best they can prepare themselves to overcome each objection.

Your role as a highly effective leader is to ensure that every member of your sales team knows the top 5 or 10 objections that they will encounter in the field, and that they are well scripted and confident on how they will overcome each objection.

This is the best gift you can give your sales team as they work to meet their sales goals in the coming year. Take the time necessary to coach and train your sales team and they will be forever grateful. The time you invest now in this critical area will pay off for years to come.

One of the best techniques for overcoming objections is the “Feel, Felt, Found” approach, as taught by the famous sales trainer Zig Ziglar.

Zig says, "This technique gives you an extra cushion of time and allows the prospect to identify with others." Example: "I understand how you FEEL. Others have FELT that same way until they FOUND out about X benefits."

Here’s a more specific example of the Feel, Felt Found technique:

Client: "The cost of this service just keeps increasing!"

Salesperson: "I understand how you feel Mr. Client. Many of my client’s felt the exact same way… that is until they found out how much they actually profited as a direct result of our enhanced product features. Let me explain the benefits of this product/service in more detail."

Using this kind of approach will immediately soften any objection because the client will immediately believe that you appreciate and understand their feelings. As a result, they become more open to your input and suggestions.

In the next section, we’ll provide steps that you can take to help your team identify their most common objections and how to effectively overcome each one.

"Opposition is a natural part of life. Just as we develop our physical muscles through overcoming opposition - such as lifting weights - we develop our character muscles by overcoming challenges and adversity."
- Stephen R. Covey

New Tools, Resources, Updates & Ideas

Objections Workshop

"Difficulty is the reason history never accepts."
- Edward R. Murrow

Anticipating the most common objections experienced by your sales team will require you to pull your team in for a meeting, either in person or over the phone.

In this meeting you will conduct the following Objections Workshop.

First, state the purpose of the meeting. In this meeting your team will identify the most common objections they hear from their prospects and they will leave feeling armed with effective scripting for overcoming each objection.

This workshop will increase the confidence of your team for dealing with objections and therefore increase their overall productivity.

Using a flipchart or notepad, ask your team to begin sharing their toughest or most common objections. Make the list as long as necessary – get all the feedback you can.

Once the list is complete, begin to identify those objections that are related. Combine any objections that are closely related. This will cut down the list to a more reasonable number.

Next, divide your team into small groups. If you have a team of 12, break them into group of 3 or 4. Assign each group with an equal number of objections so that all of the objections listed are assigned.

As you team to determine the ‘root cause’ of each objection. Choose from one of the four options:

  1. No perceived need
  2. Does not trust you or your organization
  3. Perceives the process as inconvenient (no time to talk or make the change)
  4. Just doesn’t understand

Suggest that the scripted response for each of the above causes be approached in the following way.

Does Not Need: Make the benefits more obvious, they are not understanding how they will benefit from your product or service.

Trust: Provide more specific examples of how the product or service is delivered, how it works, how you will ensure that all goes according to plan. Hold yourself accountable to ‘make it work’ for the client.

Inconvenience: Make certain they understand the cost of not taking action. Be considerate of their time, but make it clear you will work proactively to make the process as simple as possible.

Not Understanding: Attempt to further educate the customer. Provide specific stories of how results have improved at other companies, their competitors if possible.

Remember to utilize the Feel, Felt, Found technique that we described in the first section. This will help each team to begin forming a professional script for each identified objection.

Place a time limit on this activity. Each script should contain only 2-3 sentences. A typical script should take no more than 5-10 minutes to create.

Once your team has created their scripts for each objection. Ask each team to present their scripts to the entire group. Ask the group to provide feedback on the quality of each script. Modify to improve if necessary.

Make sure to write down each script on a master list that you will share with the entire group. Over the next few weeks, support your team by quizzing them on their answers to each objection – this will ensure that they build the skill necessary to more effectively overcome each objection in the field.

Great work Coach! Your team may not realize it now, but they will understand the benefits of this Objections Workshop as soon as they get their next objection from a customers. They will be better prepared and less fearful when confronted with objections going forward.

10 Days to New Income

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"“Accept the challenges so that you may feel the exhilaration of victory."
- General George S. Patton

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