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Getting The Glengarry Leads Will Diminish Your Sales Skills Quickly

When something is too good to be true, it probably is. I watched “Glengarry Glen Ross” recently, noting at how each of the unsuccessful salesmen in the room were bound and determined to get the “better leads, the Glengarry leads.”

The Glengarry leads were a bunch of easier prospects to win over. Better leads because they were wrapped in a golden bow, on salmon note cards. The type locked into the office manager’s safe, where a sales person doesn’t have to work as hard to get the sale.

All the sales person has to do is dial the number, once the person answers, a sale is in progress.

Here’s the issue I’ve got with that scenario: If anyone can do sell with those leads, why exactly would they pay you to do it?

It’s a mistake that the characters in the film constantly make about what the Glengarry leads represent. It also happens to a lot of real sales people on a sales floor. Especially when people fight to do renewals rather than new business sales.

When you’re no longer having to work for a sale, you become an order-taker, not a sales person. Quickly, your sales abilities are neutered to sell because you’ve now trained your brain just to do the opposite, just to listen, let the prospect tell you how many of the product they want, and get their credit card.

And I’m willing to bet that even some of those Glengarry lead prospects didn’t automatically say “yes” when called on the phone.

Even the best prospect has to be sold on what they are buying. The rest of the Glengarry sales force didn’t look at it that way. They get too swayed by Alec Baldwin’s character Blake, the troubleshooter from downtown who shows his expensive watch, talks about his $90,000 BMW outside, and rains abuse about a lack of sales numbers to the Glengarry staff.

Blake is the one selling the importance of the Glengarry leads. The only person not in the room is Al Pacino’s character, who happens to be the top closer, who never hears the pitch about the Glengarry leads, therefore sells better without them because he doesn’t focus on them.

While the rest of the staff remains order-takers, Al Pacino’s character builds up a dialogue with his client before ever bringing up the possibility of buying real estate. The rest of the Glengarry staff are just pushing their product, rather than selling it.

The lesson in this is that the staff should have followed Al Pacino’s lead, rather than listened to Alec Baldwin on what was important. They would have ignored the Glengarry leads, instead focusing on their sales skills, and stayed out of jail in the process.

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