Competition is not why sellers behave badly · The Sales Blog


The first time I wrote about the competition on my blog, I received a number of negative comments and some emails. The people contacted were not satisfied with the fact that I describe sales as a "bloody sport". It was certainly hyperbolic, but I was trying to specify the nature of the sales, namely that it was a zero-sum game where we win and where everyone loses). In their opinion, even mention of competition in terms of gain and loss was enough to cause sales to abandon their integrity and to adopt a sales approach "all that is needed".

Zero Sum

To believe that negative sales are due to the zero nature of sales is misunderstanding of what makes it possible to win customers and what really causes high-pressure tactics, difficult sales, malarming, self-oriented, illegal or immoral .

Just beating the competition is no longer acceptable. It's about putting them in their place – second place – and keeping them there. Eat their lunch is direct, about, and about the money. Your money. – Jeffrey Gitomer

Customer acquisitions are where companies compete in the market, and in B2B, most of this competition occurs in sales (with marketing being a smaller factor than in B2C sales). You never see the account managers or the heads of operations of two different companies competing against each other. It is rare to see someone from outside sales, sitting in the lobby of a company, waiting for his competitor to finish his presentation to be able to follow it with a presentation designed to help him. ensure to win – and the person whose name appears above them on the sign sheet loses. If you see an operations manager in the customer's lobby, there is no doubt that he is accompanied by a salesperson.

Almost none of the sellers who compete for business are willing to put their integrity or reputation at stake to win a deal. They know that trust is the currency in which they trade, and that once lost, it can disappear forever. That's why sellers prefer to lose than to lie to a customer. However, a small minority of them operate outside the boundaries of fair play.

Low moral intelligence

The small minority of misbehaving vendors do so because they have low moral intelligence, or what we call MQ. When people believe that competition means they have to do "all the right things", it is their weak moral intelligence that drives them to lie to customers as to other companies, to lie about their own abilities, to offer bribes, to hide general conditions and to use high-pressure techniques.

Competition is not more responsible for the bad behavior of sellers than the bad behavior of CEOs, CFOs or athletes who cheat to win a match. The competition is based on fair play and not on cheating.


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