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The Service Solution

Give new meaning to the phrase customer service.

In my travels, I've noticed there are two very distinct schools of thought with regard to the treatment of customers. Salespeople today walk into presentations with one of the following mind-sets: the I'm-here-to-sell-you mind-set or the I'm-here-to-serve-you mind-set.

The sell-you mind-set has been around for about a hundred years: "We are making as many products as we can for you, and we intend to sell them to you as fast as possible, for the highest possible price. Then we're out the door. So whatever you do, don't complain or ask any questions. We know you're sort of dumb, so it's easy to wow you because you can be talked into anything."

A surprising number of salespeople are still doing business with the sell-'em-fast and sell-'em-hard mind-set. Do you treat your customers this way?

Danielle Kennedy presents sales and marketing seminars and keynote addresses worldwide and is the author of seven sales books as well as audio and video sales training programs. Check local bookstores for her book, Seven Figure Selling (Berkley Press). Write to her in care of Entrepreneur, 2392 Morse Ave., Irvine, CA 92614.

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This article was originally published in the March 1998 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: The Service Solution.

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