I have been on some crazy sales adventures, both selling and buying, over the years, but there are some that stand out more than the rest. As one of the developers of the PRO-SOLD method of strategic planning and trainers of thousands in using DISC in sales and business applications, I can relate to some experiences that just defy all logic. There were some tactics that worked and some that flopped. Here is a story of one of those that went surprisingly well:
Corporate Selling Without Your Shoes
My business partner and founder of our company, Dr. Sanford Kulkin, has been on hundreds, if not thousands, of sales calls with me throughout the years. One notable meeting, which took place some time ago, was a proposal presentation for a strategic consulting agreement to the Executive Management of a Fortune 100 company. I won’t provide the city or name, as you would recognize them immediately by either.
There were 3 or 4 presentations ahead of us that day, and all were running over their allotted time slots. It was late in the day and we were the final company to present, so concessions were made and we were able to sit inside the board room for the last part of the presenter ahead of us. As we sat there, the competition rambled on and on about how wonderful they were and all they would do for the company. It was rather boring and somewhere in the waiting Sandy (Dr. Kulkin) took off his shoes.
I saw it, since I was sitting beside him, but no one else had. Finally, our time had come and we walked up to the presentation area. People started laughing. Sandy forgot to put his shoes back on and his socks were a bit obvious. As professionals, without shoes, we carried on and gave, what we believe to have been, a pretty good presentation. We explained the expertise was really the people in the room and as consultants, our job was to bring out the best in all of them. Together, we had the answers.
Driving back to our hotel Sandy said, “Well that might be one we don’t get.” To our surprise, the VP called the next day and said unanimously they had voted to give us the contract! We asked if there was one deciding factor in the decision and he replied, “After you left we all talked about things and said if you were that relaxed (shoes off) giving the presentation then you must REALLY be good at what you do!” We are, and it was a win-win for both parties. I wouldn’t recommend this to all, but it worked that day!
I would love to hear one of your funny sales experiences and what could have made it better (or worse). Share in the comments below.
P.S. Don’t tell our competition our secret formula!
Take your sales team to the next level with the PeopleKeys PRO-SOLD method of strategic planning. PRO-SOLD is an online, self-paced training, combining the proven concepts of the PeopleKeys DISC System, the communication/trust model of the Johari Window, and current sales methods to help your team develop your own strategy for success.