You would not tenderize the meat after grilling ... would you...

So this sales person visits my house to sell high energy windows. I was interested. He starts to show his wares. I stopped him and said that before we can talk about how many kinds of windows there are you might want to give me some idea of the total cost involved here and what should I expect in return. In fact, I had told this to the cold caller who set the appointment. The sales person goes around the house and comes back in . He opened up his box with a demo version of the window and goes on and on about the type of glass, and the argon gas in between the glasses, the UV protection comparison, the ease of cleaning on both side by the flick of a switch, the mix of vinyl and wood surface, the life time warranty, the special vent lock, and the other innumerable features. Then I had to stop him and ask him… okay so what is the cost approximately of changing the windows of my house…. He went silent and after coaxing gave me a range. I said okay so, what do I get in return. And again he tried his steam train… and I stopped him yet again and asked him to give me the percentage of energy savings.

Anyhow, the long and short of the story is that the break even was about 10 year and the cost was higher than I wanted to deal with.

This is not unusual. Sales people think that somehow they can sell even if a person is not a qualified buyer. What a waste of time. Would it have hurt if they has asked me upfront if I was even willing to consider spending half the money and get twice the returns than what was possible? Answer probably would have been no. The cold caller could have tried to persuade me into warming up to the idea of the return over the investment because I was interested in windows, and still if I did not want then he should have closed the case.


Give prospect the idea of the value (what ever that may be) and a good range of cost - to qualify them before you even begin selling. Most sales people perform poorly because they do not follow the simple direct path to selling: QUALIFY BEFORE YOU SELL… SELLING IS A PROCESS…. DON’T IGNORE THE BASICS.