10 Proven Rules for Sales Success

by Steve Schiffman on October 2, 2010 | Articles

Here are twelve simple, career-changing pieces of advice I have been sharing for years with salespeople. The list, which is the culmination of over a quarter of a century of experience, may be brief; but I’ve noticed that those who follow all twelve rules always seem to out-earn those who don’t.
Here they are:

  1. Always respond to customers and prospects within 48 hours. Why on earth wouldn’t you?
  2. Schedule sales appointments for early (8AM) or late (4PM). This is the single best time management strategy for salespeople.
  3. Follow through immediately on thank-you letters, letters of agreement, and internal paperwork. What message do you send to customers, prospects, and superiors if you are habitually late in these areas?
  4. Set two new appointments every day. If you do, you will not lack for prospects. Guaranteed.
  5. Strategize with your sales manager on a regular basis. Ask for help; and be ready to use your boss as an advocate within the target organization.
  6. Don’t kid yourself. I have never met a superior salesperson who made a habitof self-deception about prospects and customers.
  7. Create a sense of urgency in all your communications. This is your job, and no one else’s.
  8. Be honest. People won’t give you repeat business if they don’t trust you.
  9. Know ten client success stories. Be ready to share them at the drop of a hat.
  10. Decide on your opening question for the meeting. Don’t walk into the meeting without a plan!
  11. Decide on the Next Step you want and ask for it directly. This, too, is your job, and no one else’s.
  12. Always get the prospect to do something. Another meeting. A visit to a facility. A conference call. Something has to land on the other person’s calendar, preferably for a slot within the next ten business days.

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Steve Schiffman is a leader in motivation and sales training, and a respected trainer and coach. He has personally trained over 500,000 sales professionals with proven closing and cold-calling techniques, plus millions more through his audio and video products.

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

keith mullins April 24, 2011

Do you and could you include provision for specific sales technique reminders e.g., various approaches, introductions, closes etc… How to get clients’ yes decisions and their willing to part with their money by taking tangible care of their purchases according to their spontaneously agreed and envisaged benefit!


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