Objections? Now What Do You Do?

Objections Are Not Rejections

My mother told me that I used to cry when I asked for something and she said “no.” Things were relatively simple back then and no simply meant no. Nope. Fuhgeddaboudit. Not getting your way, kid. Wah!

Even as adults, many seasoned sales professionals take “no” negatively. Their inner self is screaming: “What! How can you say no! I told you everything you need to know to say yes!” Too often, feeling frustrated, the salesperson packs up and leaves, blaming everything and everyone, except himself. What if “no” didn’t necessarily mean no, never? It may have just meant the customer had a question that still needed to be answered.

Begin by Thinking Differently
Believing that “no” is a rejection—a personal rejection of you—is not an effective way of thinking. That line of thinking will not help you in a sales situation, or any situation for that matter. As the saying goes, “In order to change your results, you first have to change the way you think.”

An Objection Is a Gift
When you ask for the sale and the customer says nothing, you have no idea what they are thinking about. If you just leave, you are like a cork on the water, with wind and current determining where you will end up. On the other hand, when you get a reply with any information, at least you know what the customer is thinking about. If you are prepared, you can reply with something that could keep you moving towards the sale. In this way, I’ve learned to see an objection as a gift from the customer: something to work with. 

Like Water Flowing Through a Pipe 
Think of it this way: Your customers invited you into their home because they need something. On top of that, they could have chosen dozens of other contractors, but they chose you. You’re already ahead of everyone else. During your call, you have talked with them, asked questions, explained some things, and like water flowing in a pipe, you have opened valve after valve so the water can get through. When you encounter an objection, it’s simply as if one valve has remained closed and all you have to do is focus on getting that one open. Then you’re back on your way to making the sale.  

No, No, No…Yes
Perhaps now you will consider that getting a “no” is a natural part of the customer’s decision-making process. You might even start welcoming the “no” and seeing it as the best way to keep you on course with the customer. So, one after another, getting and then clearing “no” out of the way is how you get to the final yes. 

Disarm, Clarify, Provide New Information, Close Again
Practice these four steps, and after a while you will create “yes” out of “no” at times when you would have otherwise left the house without a sale. 

1. Disarm with Agreement
2. Clarify that You Heard Them
3. Provide New Information (or Repeat the Old)
4. Close Again

Example: 

“I’m getting other bids.”

Response: 

Disarm: “Sure, I can appreciate that.”

Clarify: “Some of my customers invest their time to get other bids.”

New Information: “If you could find another company with the same experience, that used the best design methods, and had installers who were as well trained, and didn’t cut corners, and used the best quality materials, and had the best guarantees and warranties, basically with everything being the same, what do you think their price would be? (Wait) Exactly, if everything were the same, the price would have to be the same. 

Close Again: “Does that give you enough information to decide to go ahead, or do you want to take the time to talk with others?”

Remember, an objection is the customer’s way of saying yes, but there is this one thing that is in the way. Remove that and you’ll earn the sale.

Good Selling! 

About the Author:
Tom Piscitelli’s 40 years’ experience in HVAC sales training, sales management, sales coaching, marketing and consulting have given him a broad and diverse business expertise. He has developed his sales training and business capabilities by working with major manufacturers, distributors, contractors, builders and utilities. His articles have been published in many trade magazines, he often speaks at industry conventions and he particularly enjoys bringing cutting edge training approaches to our industry. 

About TRUST® Training and Coaching:
Tom founded TRUST® Training and Coaching 1997 and began conducting sales seminars that have improved the confidence and sales performance of over 10,000 
HVAC sales professionals. TRUST® Training and Coaching is an authorized training provider for International Comfort Products.