I recently met with someone who reached out to me via a social network channel and since we live in close proximity to each other, it made sense to get together for coffee. When I confirmed our appointment, I suspected that it would turn into a “let me get you signed up as an affiliate” meeting.
I wish I could say I was wrong.
When my contact showed up, I innocently asked, “So, tell me about your business.” Okay, I admit that it wasn’t an innocent question…I wasn’t sure how to get the conversation started so I resorted to my “stand-by” question.
For the next 68 minutes, my new “friend” talked.
He gave me more information than I ever wanted to know about his business. He talked about technical aspects of his product that went completely over my head. In fact, at one point I wasn’t even sure he was speaking English! And to top it off, he even dropped a few “F” bombs which really didn’t impress me. I’m not against profanity but I think it is completely inappropriate in a first networking meeting. However, the breaking point came when he stated that he had once been involved in sales training but the way he talked about it made me feel that sales training was a sleazy, shady business AND completely ineffective.
His product may be the greatest thing to ever be developed but his approach quickly convinced me that I would never become a reseller or recommend it to my clients. Although he spent lots of time telling me how other sales trainers’ use his product as a coaching tool not once did he ask if sales coaching was a service I offered. It isn’t.
People make buying decisions for many different reasons. One of those reasons is whether or not they like the sales person and if they feel they can trust that person. And one of the easiest ways to lose that trust is to slime your prospect or contact.