The Whiners - Salespeople Who Get Your Attention

Posted by Dave Kurlan on Wed, Sep 08, 2010 @ 06:09 AM

whinerDon't you hate whiners? These are the people who complain, rationalize and criticize EVERYTHING.  There is some criticism that is warranted, justified, needed and appropriate - much like the coaching I do each day - but I'm talking about unnecessary whining, when adults behave like kids and come up with something negative just because they can.

Prospects, Customers, Salespeople, Managers and Senior Executives are all guilty of whining.

Great Leaders, great sales managers, and great salespeople do not.

Let's focus in on salespeople.  Why do they whine?  Why do they look for things to complain about?

  • You didn't go on the road with me.
  • I didn't get the support I expected.
  • The product doesn't work the way it's supposed to.
  • My territory sucks.
  • I'm not making enough money.
  • You're too critical.
  • I don't get enough attention.
  • You took too long to get back to me with pricing.
  • I had to do everything myself.
  • It's a negative environment.
  • I don't get enough of the leads.
  • I shouldn't have to do that.
  • I didn't know my commission would be that small.
  • I didn't sign up for that.
  • My leads aren't as good as everyone elses'.
  • I did exactly what you told me to do.

You get the picture.  I can guarantee one thing about comments like these:  Your top performers (real sales professionals) aren't the ones taking their time (and yours) to whine.  Oh no. This stuff is the exclusive domain of the under achievers and they whine to justify their lack of success.  Whining might distract you from their dismal performance and further distract them from performing the work they're supposed to be doing.

So next time someone whines to you about well, you,  what should you do?  Whine back?  Reprimand? Thank them? Ask questions? Set the record straight?  What would you do?

Topics: Dave Kurlan, Sales Coaching, Sales Force, sales management functions, salespeople, sales pyschology

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Best-Selling Author, Keynote Speaker and Sales Thought Leader.  Dave Kurlan's Understanding the Sales Force Blog earned a medal for the Top Sales & Marketing Blog award for six consecutive years. This article earned a Bronze Medal for Top Sales Blog post in 2016, this one earned a Silver medal for 2017, and this article earned Silver for 2018. Read more about Dave.

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