Customer Interaction: Teaching Reps To Deal With Prospective Clients

Customer Interaction Teaching RepsThough there are many aspects of a salesperson’s job that are difficult and tough to master, the art of interacting with clients is one that many people struggle with throughout their careers.

To some, speaking with clients and interacting with strangers in any situation is something that comes naturally and requires no effort. Because this represents a small number of the people who are in a sales job, it shows that client interaction is one of the more challenging aspects of the position.

Part of the challenge lies in the fact that each customer is different and there is no true overarching approach that will always help a rep lock down a sale. Some clients may require a personal talk and a significant amount of correspondence, while others will simply want to strike a deal and move on.

There are some prevailing themes that can help reps move from client to client with as little resistance as possible, however, but one strategy tends to be most effective for salespeople of all experience levels.

Maintaining an emotional distance is difficult, but this approach is one that will allow for an even-keeled reaction to almost all situations. Whether or not you have a good talk with a client, this notion is something that is effective for moving on to the next call.

If a client wants to strike up a friendship and develop a more personal relationship with a rep, then this usually takes place over an extended period and can be fostered slowly and surely by the rep. Until this point, however, an emotional attachment is something that salespeople should try and avoid.

Another strategy that can help to move representatives through the various selling stages with little negativity is to respond only when necessary. Letting a client do most of the talking is often beneficial for salespeople, and this helps a rep avoid making extravagant claims or saying the wrong thing during a call.

Holding back on the initial response that you may have is the best way to avoid making a promise that you can’t follow through on or responding in a way that is not positive to the customer relationship, and each rep should master this skill so that it seems natural.

A sales management team should coach their reps on exactly how to do things, but there is only so much that they can do in an advisory role. Self-reflection is often the best teacher, and a manager should wait until the salespeople are done before they really begin to help with the phone decorum.

Representatives, especially those who are new and still learning about the best way to interact with professional clients, need to be taught in a way that also includes learning from their own mistakes. Because people tend to work things out on their own when they are reflecting out loud to a superior, a manager should look to get the salespeople talking about their experience.

They also need to realize that their experience could be something that is based on how the client is handling their own job. Many times they will base their view of the conversation around their own performance, but a rep should realize that external factors could have contributed to something negative in the correspondence.

This is why a manager needs to stress that each conversation should be held in a different light and that the rep should move on quickly if they truly fail during one talk.