MYTH: Good Salespeople are Good People TRUTH: Good Salespeople are Good Performers


The stereotypical salesperson for some people is the slick, insincere, do-whatever-it-takes-to-make-the-sale huckster. One of the reasons they think this way is that a small percentage of salespeople fit that description. So why do "good" salespeople lose out to these hucksters? It's all about performance.

"Why do good things happen to bad people?" has been the theme of books and articles. So has the counterpart: "Why do bad things happen to good people?" Let's look at that strictly from a sales perspective.

In sales, the best product or service does not win. The best company does not win. The best salesperson does not win. The best story wins.

Constructing the best story requires the use of a sales process methodology. Having a methodology and using a methodology are two different things.It's all about performance. If the good person is not following the principles of the science of sales and the huckster is, guess who will get the sale!

Your sales process methodology will include solution selling. While solution selling alone will not necessarily win the deal, being able to qualify and quantify your solution in terms that are meaningful to your customer usually will. The huckster may present their offering as a solution; you want to be in a position to show the superiority of your solution.


Nice Guys Finish Last


It is an old adage that nice guys finish last. It is true in sales when the nice guy does not do pre-call planning, does not follow a process, etc. In other words, when they do not perform, they lose. However, in the event of a tie, where the nice guy and the not-nice guy have both performed, the nice guy usually wins.

Remember, "relationship selling" is a redundant term. All selling is relationship selling. Companies don't do business with companies; people do business with people. Most folks enjoy doing business with good guys. Almost everyone prefers doing business with the good person who is also a good performer.

Good sales professionals capitalize on their initial success by asking two questions: "Who Else?" and "What Else?" Who else can they serve in their client's organization? What additional problems can they solve for this client?

That is where performance makes the difference.

You can be the nicest person in the world. The salesperson that is the most effective will get the order. Effectiveness results from performance.


Chuck Reaves, CSP, CPAE, CSO

[email protected]


Chuck Reaves CSP, CPAE is the founder of Twenty-One Associates, Inc., an Atlanta-based sales training and consulting company.

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