By Cliff Kiel, Purchasing Power’s VP of Sales

As salespeople, we often think if we just used one more technique or gave another piece of information to a prospect, that we’d make the sale. There must be something we can do, right?

Well, not always. You can’t always be everything to every prospect. And they aren’t everything to you either. Sometimes it’s better to just throw in the hat and move on. As a busy benefit adviser, it’s important to know where to set limits on what you can and cannot do. 

In one of his recent blogs, sales coach S. Anthony Iannarino’s listed seven great reasons to disqualify a prospective client and explained why:

1.    You have limited time.

You don’t have enough time to call on or win every prospective client you might serve. You don’t have to ruthlessly prioritize your time if you are going to generate the results you are capable of. You have to make decisions because time spent with some prospects means time denied to other prospects.

2.    You have limited resources.

You don’t only have limited time, you also have limited resources. If you need your technical team, your operations team, or some other overlay group’s help, you have to make tough decisions as to where to apply those resources. Apply them where they can make a difference and where it makes sense.

3.    You aren’t the right choice.

There is no reason to pretend you are something you are not. There are some prospective clients who really should be doing business with someone else. The sooner you make the decision to let them have each other, the sooner you can focus on your dream clients.

4.    Some prospects don’t perceive your value.

There are some people who do not perceive the value that you create. You’re better than your competitor. You can help this prospect produce better results. But they don’t care and they don’t value those greater results right now, so move on and sell to prospects who do.

5.    Some prospects won’t pay for your value.

The price difference between you and your competitors isn’t usually that great, but there are some people who will never believe it’s worth paying more for even when you can show them the ROI. You have limited time to give each prospect, so again, just move on.

6.    It’s a bad cultural fit.

Sometimes it’s just not a fit.  A company’s values may clash with yours or their management/leadership style makes it difficult to gain any traction internally.

7.    The prospect is an energy vampire.

Some prospects create their own drama or can be abusive because they don’t see you as a peer or partner but rather as a necessary evil and someone to be bullied or disposed of.  These prospects would be nightmare clients. You’ll recognize this type during the sales process. Disqualify these energy vampires and work with grown-ups!

By eliminating prospective clients who fall into these categories, you’ll be focusing on better prospects who might be converted to clients.

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