One Difference Between Top Sales Reps and You

Each time I work with a new company, the first thing I ask for are recordings of both their top two or three sales reps, and then recordings of everyone else.

And each time I do, I immediately identify one thing that the top reps are doing that the other reps aren’t.

I’ve been doing this for over 30 years, and things have remained constant during that time: top sales reps are better for many different reasons (personality, work effort, etc.), but they all share this one thing.

And it is…

They are assumptive.

Most sales reps beat around the bush and are timid, hesitant, and resistant to taking control of the call.

In other words, they often ask for permission, rather than be assumptive.

An example is how most sales reps open their calls. When greeted by the receptionist, they’ll ask:

“Ah, would it be possible to speak with Dave Anderson?”


“Is Dave Anderson available?”

What these approaches have in common is they are passive, and they give the gatekeeper control of the call.

Top reps, on the other hand, are assumptive. Given the example above, this translates to:

“Hi, Dave Anderson, please.”


“Hi, could I speak with Dave, please?”


“Oh hi. Could you connect me with Dave, please?”

While this may not sound like a big difference, IT IS.

There are many other examples of this (too many for this limited blog post), and if you would like a book full of them, then check this out.

Otherwise, listen to your own recordings and see where and when you give control of the conversation to the prospect. Chances are, you do it much more frequently than is good for your sales results….

Related: NFL Schedule Released Thursday. Are You Ready?