There’s nothing more discouraging this time of year than spending all day surveying a million potential gifts but getting no closer to finding something to put under the tree. That’s about the time it starts to seem like a good idea to get your wife a blender or a vacuum cleaner. It’s called decision fatigue. And it’s bad news.
It drives people to make poor decisions, delay decisions altogether, or mentally check out when there are just too many choices or too much information. The problem is that sales pros often contribute to decision fatigue by throwing out all sorts of information before they even know where their prospect is at. If, after time with you, your prospects know a lot, but haven’t accomplished anything, they’ll feel even further from a solution than when they started. Sort of like when you come home empty-handed after a long day at the mall.
So instead of throwing information against the wall to see what sticks, find out where your prospects are at in the process and start there. For example, if they haven’t even made the mental commitment to buy a home, don’t jump the gun by talking about light fixtures and finishes. You’re the one with professional sales training and you should know the new home sales process so well that you can take prospects through it in the way that is best for them.
Facilitate victories by accomplishing each step one at a time. Prospects are not going to stop you and say, “Okay, before we talk about the lots, let’s decide if we really want to live in this area.” That’s your job. Instead of taking the shotgun approach and trying to tackle multiple things at the same time, compartmentalize decisions.
“De-cluttering” the situation in this way helps eliminate confusion and thus, decision fatigue. It also helps prevent the classic line: “Forget it. There’s too much to think about. We’ll get back to you later.”
Praise your buyers for each decision accomplished along the way before moving on to the next. If they came in unsure whether they wanted to leave their current situation, but leave confident they need a change, they’re one step forward in the process. And that’s a victory.
Sales pros: Be a part of the solution. Help alleviate decision fatigue so that your prospects don’t quit before they even have a chance to start.
JASON FORREST (named one of 2012’s Top Young Trainers for Training magazine–a national, industry-wide publication) is an expert at creating high-performance sales cultures through complete training programs. He incorporates experiential learning (rather than theory) to increase sales, implement cultural accountability, and transform companies into sales organizations. A sales professional at heart, Forrest is the author of two previous books. Forrest’s competitive distinction is his behavior-modification approach (which focuses on people, process, and presentation) and his focus on culture change.
ABOUT FORREST PERFORMANCE GROUP
Forrest Performance Group specializes in culture change and creating urgency within sales teams and management. Forrest PG’s competitive distinction is its behavior modification approach as applied to a variety of programs, education, seminars and sales coach training offerings all aimed at dramatically improving sales force success.