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Posted: October 04, 2013

In sales, it pays to tell it like it is

Here are three key concepts

Liz Wendling

Turns out that being straightforward, telling it like it is, and being up-front is what most potential customers are crying out for. Recently, I had the opportunity to speak to and poll more than 75 business owners on the qualities they like most about salespeople. Turns out, an overwhelming but not surprising 80 percent said they enjoy working with salespeople who tell it like it is and can be straightforward.

Telling it like it is has some concrete advantages and perks. You experience better communication, build stronger relationships and develop deeper trust levels when you’re selling. Win-win.

Lies and mistruths damage the ability of sales people to communicate with their clients. They also result in a complete communication breakdown that is difficult or impossible to repair.

It amazes me how some salespeople will stretch the truth, mislead the customer, misrepresent their company, product, or service and omit information. While this will certainly work once or twice, most people will seldom fall for this approach again. In the long run, you might win the battle but you will lose the war.

So how can you earn a person’s trust? Here are three simple core concepts that will help you accomplish this. These came out of the mouths of the business owners I spoke with.

Honor your words. Do what you say you will do, when you say you will do it. If you make a promise to a client, keep it. If you say you will do something, make sure you follow through. This more than anything else will demonstrate you are dependable and can be counted on.

Be on time for your appointments. Regardless of how long you have worked with a particular customer, make sure you show up on time for your meeting. If, for some unforeseen reason you are going to be late, call. Your clients are busy—show them that you respect their time.

Be authentic and drop the act.  How you behave and interact with your clients and customers should not be “an act.”

These may sound like simple concepts. However, I can guarantee that many of your competitors are not executing them on a regular basis.

Ultimately, everything you do influences the level of trust you develop with your customers and prospects.

Often sales people can get caught up in their agenda that they forget to tell the truth, or fail to mention details that could make or break the value for a customer. You’re better off telling the truth and losing the sale.

In exchange for telling the truth, you will either get the sale or the truth about why not. Either way, it’s a good thing. I would rather lose a sale than lose my integrity.

Liz Wendling is the president of Insight Business Consultants, a nationally recognized business consultant, sales strategist and emotional intelligence coach. Liz is driven by her passion for business and generating results for her clients. Liz understands the challenges that business owners are facing building a business and selling their professional services in today's market.

Liz shows clients how to tap into and use their innate strength, power and confidence to develop highly successful businesses. She teaches them to create effective, dynamic and fluid client conversations that turn interested prospects into invested clients who keep coming back.

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Readers Respond

Hi Liz: It's been awhile. I follow your articles whenever they pop up. By Dan Raabe on 2013 10 11
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