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After You Ask For The Order, Don’t Forget To Get It!

by David Brock on November 2nd, 2010

The sales person had been doggedly pursuing me for several weeks.  He had called a number of times, we finally connected.  I was interested in what he presented it–he had an idea for my business that I hadn’t considered before.  Over a period of several calls, he talked to be about the ideas and his solution.  We agreed on the right solution.  I told him I was ready to buy, asked that he send me everything in writing.  I told him I would sign the agreement and we would go forward.  That was four weeks ago……

A week after we agreed to go forward, I sent an email asking about the papers.  He replied, saying that he was still putting together the paperwork, but I would have it within 2 days.  Three weeks after that conversation, I haven’t received anything—at least from him.

He had a very intriguing idea.  I had never considered it, but in our conversations he proved that it would help grow our business.  I was anxious to move forward and get the results.  I waited and waited.  Finally, I decided I couldn’t wait any longer.  In the course of our original conversations, I researched his competition  (the web is a wonderful thing).  I identified several alternatives, but didn’t contact them.  The sales person was presenting a great proposal and the investment seemed appropriate.  I decided I would stick with him.

I waited and waited……

I had done my job of buying, he had done a good job of selling.  He asked for the order and I agreed.

I waited and waited….

That was four weeks ago.  I now have a solution, but it is being supplied by one of his competitors.  I couldn’t wait any longer.  The sales person had stirred my interest, created a high sense of urgency for me to take action, and asked for the order.  The problem is, he forgot to get the order.

Selling is hard enough, finding customers, getting them interested in taking action and to spend money takes work.  Getting order is tough.  Once get the order, don’t forget to “get the order.”

From → Execution, Humor

  1. Hey Dave,

    This was a very strange point you made. If any of my salesmen did this, they would be in for one hell of a questioning.

    Like you say making the sale is hard enough, spending 30 minutes to get you the already formatted contract is worth it (it is what we are paid to do).

    If you ever hear from him again please ask him what he was thinking.


    • Daniel, while it may be surprising, it’s not that unusual. Lack of sales person follow up (perhaps not after the close), is a leading reason for sales loss! It’s hard enough to find good opportunities, it’s unacceptable not to treasure each one that you do find. Regards, Dave

  2. David,

    It never ceases to amaze me how many people fail to follow up on qualified, high-value sales opportunities. I have experienced this a number of time for my own business (and personal) purchases.

    So much business is lost because the sales person simply did not make the effort to connect at a later date (as they promised). What’s particularly interesting is that so much technology exists that can prevent this from happening.


    • Thanks for the comment Kelley. It’s hard to be empathetic to many sales people, when you see how often the problem is of our own making. Regards, Dave

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