“The reason sales people don’t close is that they don’t know what to ask the prospect to do,” Chip Doyle, Sandler Sales trainer, told the remodeling company owners at the Remodelers Advantage Business Summit on Monday in Las Vegas.

And why is it that sales people don’t know this? It’s likely that no one told them. They haven’t participated in an “ on-boarding process,” which offers sales people a systematic approach to selling, fulfilling expectations, and having accountability. The process also details ways in which owners can measure the sales person’s success.

“You need to be able to tell sales people what to do, not what not to do,” Doyle said. A good on-boarding process gives newly hired sales people the right tools to help them grow into their sales position: a prospect list; a “cookbook” of sales activities (networking events, seminars); diagnostic questions that help the owner learn what information was gleaned in a sales call; a sales template; rewards and repercussions; and a review schedule.

Among other things, Doyle discussed the “six steps to pre-call planning,” an outline to prepare for how a sales call might go: opening agenda; specific questions you intend to ask; likely objections and your plan if you choose to handle them; realistic decisions sought from the sales meeting; closing agenda and future decision; supportive beliefs and attitudes.

Although sales is an important part of your business, Doyle stressed that you don’t “hire a salesperson to save your company. You hire a salesperson because you have too many leads.” --Stacey Freed is a senior editor of Remodeling.


On Oct. 1, Doyle spoke again to the Remodelers Advantage Summit, this time on how to boost sales without sounding like a salesperson. And why would you want to do that? “Because people don’t want to be sold to; they want to buy. Selling is like dating, and you don’t want to come on too strong.” Hear more below.