October 22, 2018, 4:46 am
Vinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo SliderVinaora Nivo Slider
Why Salespeople Fail at Empathy
Written by Author   
Tuesday, 28 August 2012 23:16

1 EISS

By Colleen Stanley


Sales organizations understand the power of empathy and more sales managers are teaching this powerful EQ skill. They are well-intentioned, but often miss the mark. In an effort to help salespeople make an emotional connection with prospects, they teach validation/paraphrasing skills, not empathy skills.

Note: Validation/paraphrasing isn’t empathy; it’s active listening.

For example, a prospect says, “We are really frustrated with slow response time from our current vendor.” The salesperson hears the opportunity for empathy and says, “That must be frustrating. So, if I’m hearing you correctly, you’re tired of your current supplier not returning calls and emails quickly enough.” It’s a nice try, but this salesperson missed the opportunity to emotionally connect with the prospect. Empathy is the ability to demonstrate that you know what your prospect is thinking or feeling.

And, if you really understood the prospect’s frustration, you would do a better job of describing the thoughts and emotions around it!

Step out of your sales shoes and into the shoes of your prospect. Slow down and think, really think, about what’s going through his head. Is he frustrated with the slow response time because it feels like he was a victim of bait-and-switch selling? (The prospect signed the contract and the salesperson moved on, failing to deliver on any of her wonderful promises.) Or is the prospect frustrated about slow response time because he’s forced to spend too much time seeking answers, which takes him away from growing his business.

Once you’ve tuned into the prospect’s thoughts and emotions, simply state them. “Mr. Prospect, if I were sitting in your seat, I’d be feeling like the subject of a bait and switch. You received a lot of promises with few deliverables. And you are probably wondering if my company is going to any different.” That’s empathy. When a prospect shares a problem, don’t try to sell or solve the problem. First, demonstrate that you “get” your prospect’s world. Apply empathy and step into your prospect’s brain, heart and shoes. Talk like a real person. The result will be real conversations and real sales results.

Good Selling!  


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: 

Colleen Stanley is the founder and CEO of SalesLeadership Inc. She is the author of ‘Growing Great Sales Teams’ and “Emotional Intelligence of Sales Success” and the co-author of ‘Motivational Selling’ published by AMA.

LeadSmart Singapore is the sole exclusive distributor of SLI training products.

learn more g

Singapore (65) 6631 8322  |  6875 4871