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The Seven Great Lies of Selling

By September 11, 2023No Comments
man and woman talking over tablet with people sitting at a conference table working behind

As sales professionals, we are well acquainted with the intricate dance of communication. However, we are less likely to identify a trail of smoke and mirrors that can come from potential clients when discussing opportunities. Among the promises and nods, there is a less glamorous truth – lies that can trip up even the most seasoned salespeople.

Let us cut to the chase and shed light on these everyday deceptions that often catch us off guard.

Lie #1: “I am the decision maker.”
We have all heard it: the classic opener that hints at a clear path. This is the classic of all lies. If you were really unfortunate, this would have been followed with, “So, therefore, there is no need to talk to anyone else.” Here is the weird thing – some people who tell you this sometimes think it is true. They, too, are fooling themselves. There is no single decision maker in a complex B2B sales cycle. You are dealing with many different influences and opinions; this blend will always decide influences and persuasions.

Lie #2: “I am very interested, please send me a proposal.”
It is the polite brush-off that many have encountered. People often end a meeting when their interest has yet to be piqued, but they are not inclined to tell you the truth. They will send you a way to do work with zero commitment from themselves. Only spend time on a proposal after gaining a commitment from the prospect to assist with the collaboration of developing the proposal.

Lie #3: “The decision is going to be made on price.”
This is only sometimes true unless you are in a commoditized single-product comparison. In a B2B sales environment, multiple influences will come into play from people not interested in price!

Lie #4: “I will come back to you on this next week.”
About 90% of the time, this means, “I do not really have an interest in this, but I do not want to confront you with it – please go away.” Humans typically hate conflict and would relatively just smooth things over without disappointing you. This is the time for you to expand your sales cycle with others.

Lie #5: “The procurement process will be easy.”
Anyone who has dealt with procurement knows better! It is a political animal in its own right. Many deals have been delayed or even derailed by procurement challenges. It is crucial to understand the procurement processes early on; leaving it to the last minute could put you at a significant disadvantage.

Lie #6: “He/she has no time available in the next 2 weeks.”
While this excuse seems innocent enough, it often signals that you’re not high on their list of priorities. In such cases—approximately 85% of the time—you must start considering a backup plan.

And finally,

Lie #7: “Everything is good.”

You need to consider lies 1-6 and not fool yourself into thinking everything is wonderful. It is a disservice to yourself and your customers.

These seven lies are sucking our fellow salespeople in as you sit here and read this article! Make sure you are not one of them. We empower ourselves to forge more genuine connections and better outcomes by addressing these misconceptions head-on.

Take off the rose-tinted glasses and uncover the reality. Become a top 10% sales professional who does not give any credence to these great seven lies of selling!


Personal Challenge

Take the time out by yourself or with your manager. Have any of your deals been subjected to one or more of the great seven lies of selling? If so, prepare a backup plan and execute it!



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