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Jared Hamilton
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David Book

David Book Partner

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This post is in-your-face but the harsh reality is, if you can't answer each of these 10 questions with an astounding yes, you shouldn't be in sales. If your a manager and EVERYONE in your staff can't score 10 for 10, lose the ones that can't. Why bother? You are not in the babysitting business.

I figured this audience had thick-enough-skin to get through this with a slight smile and few laughs. If you can't answer yes to one of the questions, ignore the others, they don't mean anything individually, they mean tons together.

One more thing.... You may be asking yourself, "how am I going to cover the floor?" or "who's going to unlock the cars?" "None of my gang can score a perfect 10 on these questions, your kidding me right?" No, I'm not kidding. I'm a firm believer that a customer would rather have no help than horrible help. If your salespeople can't score a 10 for 10 on this simple quiz - your customers are better off without them and so are you. k, done' with the rant, on to the quiz....

#1: Do you want to be average or above average? This may seem like a no brainer. However, you would be surprised at the number of folks that are satisfied with mediocrity. Look at this way, if your not above average you are not helping the store succeed. Some help, some hurt, if your hurting your dealer, find a new gig.

#2: Are you ambitious? Lazy doesn't work. Claiming to be too-busy to meet someone on the lot when sales are down 50% everywhere is a total joke. You do have the time, and you don't have an excuse, go sell something already!

#3: Do you utilize your specialized sales skills? You have spent hours and hours in the "training closet" watching videos, reading books, flipping through product knowledge materials and learning how to sell like a professional. If you are not implementing these valuable skills your not selling. Understand objections (and why they are good), question customers until you know what's best for them. Do all the things the little book you threw away told you to, they work. 

#4: Do you set and track your goals? If you don't know what you are trying to accomplish how will you know if you did (trust me, you probably didn't if you don't set and track your goals). If I were your boss I would ask to see your written goals and results before I wrote your paycheck.

#5: Are you self-supportive? How many salespeople have you worked with that are needy and high-maintenance? Zero bars on the cell-phone, rain without a coat, and a Red Sox loss are annoying. A co-worker that can't take care of themselves, unlock cars or blow-up balloons is downright frustrating. Solve your own problems and don't create new ones for others.

#6: Do you know how to use a computer, basically? Typing is not a specialized skill (unless dialing a telephone is too). Emailing is not a specialized skill (unless licking stamps is too). Figure out how to use the darn thing in the most basic form and stop worrying about becoming a geek like me, nerds are sometimes the best salespeople. Yes, I'm laughing.

#7: Do you get along with everyone at work? If you answered no to #5 you already failed the quiz and shouldn't be thinking about this anyway. You don't have to be buddies with everyone at work but you do have to learn to get along with everyone in your organization. Don't get me wrong, there will be people you genuinly don't like, we all know the #5's. But, this doesn't mean you shouldn't work very hard at becoming easy to get along with yourself.

#8: Do you smile, always? You should be smiling at work, not because your having a great day or anything but because it's your job. Your dealer doesn't pay you to frustrate customers and nothing is more frustrating for a customer than to see a disgruntled employee. Fake it if you have to, smile at work, good thing happen when you do.

#9: Do you know what your dealer expects? Understanding what your dealer expects of you is no simple task. But, figuring it out is the only way to be sure you are doing well for the dealer. Reminder, you are an employee, your job is to do what your dealer expects. If you perform like a professional he'll write paychecks with professional numbers on them. If you perform like an amateur, he'll write numbers with teenager numbers on them. If your making minimum wage in the car business (lots do), your either way to far along in this quiz, your lying, or your wasting your time.

#10: Do you know more about your products than your customers? If not, why do you expect them to ask you for help? For sure, customers have access to loads of information that they only dreamed of a few years ago. So do you. If you are not willing to take the time to learn the ins-and-outs of each and every product (there are not that many, really) you sell, you may as well put "order taker" on your business card (order takers don't get paid very well in most industries).

Hopefully you went 10 for 10. If not, you cheated if your still reading. Either way, find somebody at work and put this rant on their desk, a few giggles never hurt anyone.



David Book is a tech-guru at MyGoalTracking. He can be found at

Jay Campbell
Nice post Sarah. Leads are so 1999. They are like Buzz words still. Few can even define the difference from a 3rd party vs a 1st party lead. Why are Dealers still "paying" to compete with every like Brand competitor within a 100 mile radius of their store? Push people to your website, engage them with a compelling offer, measure their activity-give them a reason to either transact or come back again. BAM-Simple.
Kristen Stanton
I have to say, from my personal experience purchasing a new Toyota RAV4 one year ago, the follow up process by some of the dealerships where I submitted leads was appalling. I entered Zip codes for near where I worked and near my home, and I could not believe the lack of followup! Even when I sent configured car via email saying "This is what I want. I'm ready to buy!" - no follow up. I finally bought from SF Toyota because they did everything right - 1. An email autoresponder - thanks for submitting lead, with contact info 2. A personal email from the ISM, also with contact info 3. A phone call from ISM, leaving his cell phone number And that was is it - I scheduled my test drive and bought that day. Not to mentioned, they had great post-sales followup, and this is the store where I get all my service done. So, I know personally, it's not more leads - it's about good follow up on the leads you do have.

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