Sales: Use common objections to improve your sales team

Last updated on May 13th, 2019 at 02:39 pm

Very few customers ever buy without raising objections. In fact, many of the same objections surface again and again, regardless of the business you are in.

Objections are good. Often times, they are the stepping stones to getting an order. At a minimum, objections should be viewed as learning opportunities that help grow and develop a sales team.

Organizations looking for ways to improve their overall selling effectiveness should create the “But List” for their sales producers. The “But List” is a simple listing of the most common objections received by your selling team, along with a draft of the appropriate responses to each of the objections. This is a very simple way to prepare your sales team to better handle the objections they receive from prospective customers.

It’s an obvious statement, but successful objection handling leads to an increased close ratio. An increased close ratio leads to increased revenue. So if a better-prepared sales team leads to an increased close ratio and an increase in revenue performance, why don’t more organizations take the time to document the most commonly heard objections along with the appropriate responseω

• Create a successful objection handling program.

• Don’t over-think this effort. This is as simple as it sounds.

• Pull your sales team together for an hour, during which everyone provides objections that they have encountered while selling for your organization.

• Organize the list of objections according to common categories (i.e.: price, ROI, no time … too busy, competitive issues, product/ service relevance, quality, etc.

• Divide the complete list of objections evenly and assign the sales reps with the task of developing appropriate responses according to each objection (this task is completed off line).

Once all of the objections have been responded to, have the list pulled together and review the consolidated list with the sales team. Work with the sales team to review and revise the responses as appropriate.

Keep in mind, this entire exercise should be viewed as a sales team development exercise benefiting the individual, the team, the company and the prospective clients. Everyone along the line will either be better prepared and/or better informed as a result of this exercise.

Hearing objections can be frustrating, but it is important to remember that an objection is frequently a buying signal. Therefore, it is important to create a learning opportunity around this topic within your sales organization.

Whether you have a new or experienced sales team, improving sales force effectiveness requires a thoughtful approach to preparing and developing your sales team. Also, consider the value this document will have on your customer support team and anyone in your organization having customer contact. Take the time to document your experiences creating a training aid for your entire organization.

Phil Mydlach is the owner of Mydlach Management Advisors (mydlachmanage, a corporate planning and performance improvement practice in Waukesha. He can be reached at (262) 662-4646 or

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