Popular Doesn’t Necessarily Equal Best – or Even Good

by Paul Bunn

If everyone is thinking alike, somebody isn’t thinking.     – George S. Patton

Turnover in the sales profession is extremely high compared to most other professions.  The failure rate for financial services agents and representatives is greater than 90 percent.

Look at the world of sales experts, sales trainers and sales consulting firms. You will find nearly all of them are offering the same way, or a better way, of selling based on the same three main goals:

  • Find prospects that apparently need your products, services, or solutions.
  • Get those prospects to agree to meet with you, in person or over the phone
  • At that meeting, or subsequent meeting(s), persuade them to buy from you


There are other aspects of that way of selling, such as: building a relationship and rapport, getting referrals, overcoming objections, improving your presentation, identifying decision-makers, etc.  But these are just supporting elements of the three main goals.  Seems simple enough. 

Consultative selling, solution selling, SPIN selling, value based selling, trusted advisor, buying facilitation, B2B, M2M, etc., whatever the current popular variation, nearly everyone in sales is pursuing those three main goals.  Most salespeople and their managers accept it as the only way to sell. It is also accepted as the only way to measure and market the effectiveness of their training.

So, why is the failure rate so high?  Why are there so many new, and supposedly better, variations of a system that is generally accepted as the only way?  Why does it need so many modifications?

We have discovered that there are only two groups of people that do not embrace the sales methods used by most salespeople: 

  • Top producers, the ones that make up the top one or two percent of salespeople
  • Prospects and customers – including salespeople when they are not selling

This discovery is a result of 40 years of research, consisting of in-person direct observation of hundreds of top producers in multiple industries while they were prospecting and selling.   We found that over 80 percent of these top producers did not follow the universally accepted selling models.  Also, they did not accept or work towards the popular and accepted goals of selling.  They used a sales  process that formed the basis of what is now known as High Probability Selling (HPS).   

Most salespeople will continue to stay with what is popular. However, if you believe that popular doesn’t necessarily equal best, then High Probability Selling might be for you.

Listen and Learn

We teach High Probability Selling and Prospecting.  You can listen to a recording of one of our Participative Learning Sessions by clicking here.

You can contact us by clicking here… even if you disagree.

Or call us at 800-394-7762 (disconnected in 2015 – see updated contact page). 

If you want to learn the process and mindset of top producing salespeople, you want to learn more about High Probability Selling.

Until Next Time…Sell Well

High Probability Selling

Copyright 2007.


Tags: How+to+sell, The+secret+to+selling, Selling+and+Persuasion

Author: Carl Ingalls

Administrator for High Probability Selling Blog

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