Close the Deal With Urgency

Urgency is what gets top sellers up in the morning and keeps them fired up all day.
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This story appears in the May 2009 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »
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Many entrepreneurs mistakenly think that making the sale has to do with using the consultative selling approach, special listening skills, likeability or any number of popular questioning or closing programs. Sure, they're all important aspects of selling. But the granddaddy of them all--the one factor that guarantees your sales success more than any other and the one method top producers have in common--is a sense of urgency.

Urgency is what gets top sellers up in the morning and keeps them fired up all day. Their attitude is, "If it's to be, it's up to me, and I determine my own success or failure." They're constantly asking themselves, "What do I need to do next to move this sale forward? What actions do I have to take to get it done?" It's about putting your ideas and strategies in motion.

Top sellers don't waste time when there's no opportunity. They're so intensely focused on each of their accounts that they know exactly what each customer wants and what it will take to help them grow their business. When they don't see the benefit to that customer, they move on and eliminate wasted energy for both sides. But when there's real opportunity, they're relentless. A voice inside them keeps saying, "Don't let customers miss the many ways they can truly benefit from you and your service."

I remember finding out about a customer who said he would order for his stores but didn't follow through. I went to visit him and told him I would get the service department on the phone so he could get his counter displays before the holiday. I looked him in the eye and told him I would personally buy back whatever inventory he didn't sell. And I made sure I had planned a local media event to get his stores some unexpected activity to assist in the sell-through. He sold out in a week.

I remember the feeling I had as I left him that day. I realized he never would have bought on the spot like that if he didn't like me, feel comfortable with me or have a successful relationship with me on previous programs. But the real reason was that I wasn't leaving him until he did buy from me. I knew he would have success, and even before walking in, I based my endgame on that sense of urgency.
To sell well, we need to prioritize specific goals for all of our activities and then act on them with confidence, conviction and a desire to move things forward.

Edition: July 2017

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