Believe it or not, the advice of listening to your prospect seems to be becoming increasingly archaic and outdated.  Unfortunately, it is the best way to get a sale.

One of my first sales managers told me that GOD gave us 2 ears and 1 mouth and that we should use those features in at least those proportions (2 to 1) when selling.

Over the past few years, I’ve noticed an alarming decrease in the willingness of sales people to listen.  When I make field calls with my clients’ sales people I can see the prospects literally seething due to the fact that the sales person clearly isn’t listening to them.

Not only is this disrespectful, but by not listening and talking (way to much) the sales person is literally talking him or herself out of a sale.  Proactive listening is a skill that can be developed.

But, like all skills it must be practiced.

When you are talking to a customer constantly ask yourself what does this individual mean by the statement they just made?  Also, practice using open or reflective questions which prompts more conversation to come from your prospect.

You’ll find that the combination of proactive listening and reflective questioning will give you greater insight to the needs of your prospect.

As your insight increases, your sales cycle decreases.  You’ll have more confidence and you will sell more of your products and services with less effort.

Remember, use your ears not your mouth and you’ll close more sales more rapidly.

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