Listening is more important than speaking…right? I mean, would I be wrong saying that it is TWICE as important as speaking? Looking at the equipment…two ears, one mouth…even I can make the maths work on that one.
I guess I am only partially joking. Let’s just say that everyone agrees listening is higher on the list than speaking. If that is so universal…why is it that you never see listening skills being offered by management, or as a course online, or at school? Unfortunately…I have no idea.
Sellers need to step up their game
This is what I do know. All great sellers are great listeners first. They figured out early that listening without an agenda, focusing on their prospects issues and needs, powerfully differentiates them from almost ALL their peers. For one simple reason. Almost no one really listens.
I know this because I catch myself in this loop myself…and I am AWARE of it. It’s just human nature. People tend to listen less intently to people they are more familiar with. Don’t ask me why. And it’s a big problem in sales because we spend so much time training our reps to present their solutions with confidence…confidence that can only be achieved through repetition. What ends up happening is when we finally do get a chance to interact with a prospect…we spend about 90% of the time THINKING about what we are going to say to them while they are talking to US. The other 10% of time is spent listening for a break in the conversation…so we can give our pitch. Ugh.
This cycle can be broken…but it takes initiative and a little bit of understanding about WHY listening is so important. After doing a little research and listening to Tim Ferriss and Cal Fussman — I am able to find at least 10 reasons why I think listening will help you crack the sales code with your accounts. Have a look below: