Sales and Communications:
16 Bad Habits You Can Change

Leaders seem to forget that their human assets make or break a customer’s ownership experience.

“Interpersonal interaction, though sometimes not the top reason for making a purchase, is almost always the reason for not repurchasing.” ~ Marshall Goldsmith, Don Brown and Bill Hawkins, What Got You Here Won’t Get You There in Sales!: How Successful Salespeople Take It to the Next Level, (McGraw-Hill, 2011).

 Creating a positive experience for customers is every employee’s job, including those who work outside the sales department. Even if you have limited customer contact, your ability to influence and persuade others builds a foundation for effective interpersonal communications that lead to business success.

Unfortunately, training often overlooks key interpersonal skills for influencing others. Workers at all levels fail to understand that:

  • Customer expectations for the sales experience have increased.
  • Customers enjoy a broader, more competitive selection of products and services.
  • Companies are falling short on customer-relationship communications by over relying on technology and outsourcing.
  • There is often misalignment between sales and service.
  • The pace of customer response is accelerating, yet salesperson ramp-up is longer, more costly and more difficult.
  • Workers are stressed by rising targets and quotas, but have access to fewer resources.
  • Customers define value both rationally and emotionally, yet less than 25 percent of salespeople are deemed proficient in core selling competencies.

This article explores sales and customer experiences, identifies 16 bad habits that interfere with the ability to influence, and suggests 4 steps to improving communication success.

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This is a brief synopsis of a 1,500-word article and Article Nuggets,*suitable for consultants’ newsletters for executives and leaders in organizations. It is available for purchase with full reprint rights, which means you may put your name on it and use it in your newsletters, blogs or other marketing materials. You may also modify it and add your personal experiences and perspectives.

The complete article includes these important concepts:

  • Functional vs. Human Factors
  • Connecting Through Empathy
  • Empathy vs Ego
  • The Empathy Deficit
  • 16 Destructive Sales Habits
  • How to Conquer a Bad Habit
  • Follow-Up Works

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