The job of a salesperson can at times be frustrating and emotionally demanding. Often salespeople are placed in a position that tests their patience and ability to maintain a professional demeanor. The way in which a salesperson handles these situations will ultimately affect the relationships that salesperson has with their clients. “When faced with unpleasant or negative situations, they choose to focus on the positive elements instead of allowing themselves to be dragged down” (Robertson, 2005). A successful salesperson must also learn to look through a negative situation and see a desired outcome at the end. “They know that their actions alone will determine their results and they do what is necessary” (Robertson, 2005).
Analysis of Case Situation:
Case 5.1 of the textbook deals with a situation in which a salesman, John Andrews, has come to present his product to a company. The company’s buyer, Martha Gillespie, shows no signs of interest in his presentation or what he has to offer. After putting the meeting on hold for several minutes of casual conversation, showing obvious signs of disinterest, and cutting the meeting short, Ms. Gillespie makes it quite clear to Mr. Andrews that she is uninterested in what he has to offer. Mr. Andrews wastes no time in leaving the meeting with a short, unprofessional “Ok” for a farewell.
John Andrews has found himself faced with a very frustrating sales position. It is not easy to remain calm and collective after you spend your time and efforts in preparation to meet with a client and they seem to care less about the work you have done. When put in a situation such as the one presented him, many salespeople would lose their cool, get frustrated, and potentially destroy good will between themselves and a client. Although the
case does not make indications as to how he controlled himself in the meeting, it would seem as if he remained calm throughout the entire meeting. The only indication of poor judgment on his part was in the way he left the meeting.
Answers to Case Questions:
1. What nonverbal clues did the salesperson, John Andrews, experience when contacting Martha Gillespie? •Ms. Gillespie’s body language gave signals of disinterest.
i.Her eyes were averted and focused on other things
ii.Leaned back in her chair
iii.Stated Fidgeting with her golf shoes
•Her averted attention gave signs of lack of interest.
i.She showed up late for their meeting
ii.Put him off to do other things in the office
1.Talk to her secretary about non work related topics
2.Talked to her husband on the phone while Mr. Andrews waited. iii.Dismissed him to talk to another salesperson
2.If you were John Andrews, how would you have handled the situation?
•Mr. Andrews should have realized that although Ms. Gillespie wasn’t interested in the product at this point in time, she is a customer of his because she has purchased from him in the past.
•Mr. Andrews should have responded in a cool and collective manner. Instead of a short response and quick exit, he should have thanked her for her time and let her know that he would try to be available to finish their meeting at a more convenient time.
•He should have continued to have an enthusiastic optimistic attitude. This attitude would help create a more personable relationship between him and his client.
Although it was inappropriate of Ms. Gillespie to disregard the meeting with Mr. Andrews in such manner, he may have hurt future relationships with the client by letting the situation get to him.
Mr. Andrews needs to work on not allowing a bad sales meeting, such as this one, the chance to frustrate him in a way that may have affected future business with the client. In addition, he should also understand that any bad impressions left with this client may be passed to other potential clients. Such negative publicity may make it harder to sell to other potential clients.