“Why Not Just One?”

How do you respond to a prospect who says,

“We’re already working with several firms so we have no need for your services.”

Most industry practitioners respond in one of following ways.

“Are you satisfied with the results to date from using this approach?”

Or

“How’s that working for you?”

Or

“Why not allow me an opportunity to show you what I can do?”

Or

Any one of the hundreds of variations that a creative mind can produce when confronted with this standard objection.

Although many of these responses can be effective when applied in the proper circumstances, more often than not they fall on deaf ears as the prospect’s primary intent is to end the call as quickly as possible.

An alternative response that may surprise your prospect as well as provide a foundation for a two-way discussion would be:

“Why not just one?”

The prospect is generally startled by this response because of its simplicity and directness. Consider the possible directions the call could take from this point.

Of course, the prospect could hang up on you. However, if they were going to do that, nothing you could have said or done would have prevented that from happening.

The prospect might respond, as they do in many instances with a surprised,

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“What did you say?”

This is a perfect response which provides an opening for you to reframe your question.

“I asked, ‘why not just one?’ Haven’t you been able to develop a relationship with at least one firm that could meet your needs on a consistent basis?”

Regardless of the prospect’s response, you now have something to discuss that is meaningful for both of you.

Remember

Most employers’ preference would be to work with only one firm at time if they were confident that firm could consistently meet their needs.

This approach not only saves them time, energy, and resources, but would also eliminate much of the frustration, duplicity and confusion inherent when working with multiple firms at the same time. And that’s the discussion you want to have with the prospect.

Therefore, if you are performance oriented and truly capable of qualifying a prospect, try focusing the discussion by simply asking, “Why not just one?” The ensuing exchange may very well position you to ask the more important question, “Why not just me?”

As always, if you have questions or comments, just let me know.

Terry Petra is one of our industry’s leading trainers and consultants. He has successfully conducted in-house programs for hundreds of search, placement, temporary staffing firms and industry groups across the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand, Russia, England, and South Africa. To learn more about his training products and services, visit his web site at: www.tpetra.com. Terry can be reached at (651) 738-8561 or e-mail him at Terry@tpetra.com.

Recipient of the Harold B. Nelson Award, Terry Petra is one of our industry's leading trainers and consultants. He has successfully conducted in-house programs for hundreds of search, placement, temporary staffing firms and industry groups across the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand, Russia, England, and South Africa. To learn more about his training products and services, including PETRA ON CALL, and BUSINESS VALUATION, visit www.tpetra.com. Terry can be reached at (651) 738-8561 or click to email him.

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