By John Holland, Chief Content Officer, CustomerCentric Selling® – The Sales Training Company

Image courtesy of Pakorn at

sales tipsHave you ever tried to get someone to like you? My wife and mother have tried for decades. It hasn’t been especially productive. When meeting executives for the first time, many sellers are anxious to make positive first impressions. Buyers are working from positions of power as they have granted you permission to meet and can terminate the call prematurely if it isn’t going well.

Consciously or subconsciously, some sellers decide their objective is to have buyers like them. By looking at a new relationship from this perspective, it makes sellers view themselves as subordinates. Consider for a moment how unlikely it is that the buyer is trying to get you to like them. 

Instead, it may get you to a better place if your first objective is to have buyers respect you. Especially when making Key Player calls, the source of your power lies in being a subject matter expert. Ideally your knowledge extends beyond the offering and you have the ability to uncover business outcomes that can be achieved through usage of your products and services.

Being liked and respected aren’t mutually exclusive. Given a choice of which decision I’d like to have buyers make first, it would be respect.

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