Understanding body language is a powerful tool that salespeople generally don’t take advantage of.
Sure we all know that crossed arms and frowning faces mean a prospect isn’t delighted with the price increase we’re trying to sell them on… but can we get a little deeper?
When A Prospect Isn’t Interested?
Knowing the moment that you’ve turned off a prospect gives you the opportunity to –
- Ask for their objection
- Emphasise why you said what you did
- Back track a little
- Disqualify the person as a prospect
It reduces your sales cycle lengths as it reduces the phenomenon of “That was a great meeting” but 6 months later there still no deal.
“Grown ups learn to hide disdain and disinterest” – Nick Morgan
This moment of decision in the prospects brain, were they’ve decided your product just isn’t for them, is difficult to spot because adults are well trained in hiding it.
Think of the times your friends have shown or told you about something they’re really proud of – some art work, a new job, a new girlfriend – and to not hurt their feelings you’ve put on a smile and said well done.
When the reality is you’re throwing up a little in your mouth.
Our challenge is seeing through this acting and noticing more subtle cues than someone’s arms being crossed…
What to look for?
There are 4x things salespeople should be observing in their prospects.
Importantly it’s not necessarily a specific state of movement for example that shows disinterest, it’s a change from one state to another of the following –
Pupils constricting – It can be a little tough to notice but if you can catch your prospects pupils go from wide eyed to smaller and the light in the room hasn’t changed, then likely their thoughts on your conversation have.
Body pulling away/leading back – If the prospect suddenly leans back away from you when a specific point is raised you can tell they’re having a hard time processing it.
Turning away from you – It’s a subconscious movement rather than a full blown rude twist around in the swivel chair but a firm shift away from you suggests they didn’t like what they heard.
Restlessness – This is the most powerful of all. The prospect getting restless could mean that you’re either labouring your points and they’re ready to close or that they can’t wait to show you to the door.
If any of these body language shits are observed it’s time to stop, ask the prospect what is wrong or what has changed and don’t continue forward until you get it out of them.
The question I always run to at this moment, time and time again is “is there anything I’ve said so far that would stop you wanting to move forward today”?
This gives them the opportunity to be clear with you.
And the opportunity for you solve the objection before it halts things further down the line.
Dr. Nick Morgan is one of America’s top communication theorists and coaches. A passionate teacher, he is committed to helping people find clarity in their thinking and ideas – and then delivering them with panache.
He has been commissioned by Fortune 50 companies to write for many CEOs and presidents.
Learn more – Publicwords.com
For more expert sales training check out – SalesSchool.org