Take No Prisoners is a free weekly memo from Scott Wintrip that explores how Radical Accountability prospers companies and changes lives. Instead of taking people hostage with outdated, heavy-handed, and ineffective methods of management, measurement, and motivation, Radical Accountability focuses on creating an unwavering responsibility for getting what matters most done.

Predatory animals and the best leaders of sales teams have something in common—their sense of “smell” is finely tuned. While predators can smell fear, sales leaders can “smell” urgency, or lack of it. A scent of urgency makes the difference between a done deal and a deal that comes undone.

A recent project where I advised the VP of Sales on how to improve results included my three questions for assessing the strength of the desire of the buyer:

  1. Are you working with the Empowered Buyer?

    Trying to sell to anyone other than the Empowered Buyer, the individual who has full authority to say and sign for a “yes,” is like a tiger trying to get at its prey through the bars of a cage. He can see what he wants, even willing it to come to him as he snarls and licks his chops, but acquiring it remains out of reach.

  2. Is there trust?

    Even when there is a need to buy, a lack of trust will bring out resistance in even the most motivated Empowered Buyer.

  3. Is there compulsion to buy?

    Even if you answered “yes” to the first two question, without an irresistible urge to buy and buy from you, you’re likely to have an Empowered Buyer who is going through the motions instead of getting out his or her checkbook.

The aforementioned sales team is having their best start ever in the history of the company, simply because they are using their senses, especially to work real deals and quickly let go of the rest. Being able to sense urgency is a required skill to navigate the jungle that is today’s business climate.

This Week’s Radical Accountability Activating Action: Implement the three Scent of Urgency questions as part of the required sales process for each prospect.

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