Checklist for a Successful Sales Flight

Successful sales transactions don't happen by accident and they aren't based on luck.

Airplane

Top sales people are prepared for the expected and the unexpected, which means knowing what prospects are looking for and exceeding their expectations. Accomplishing that takes proper planning and a final examination of the factors involved in the sale.

So take a tip from pilots. Consider having a "preflight" checklist. Before every sales call, go though it completely. This proactive step reduces the chance of failure and increases the chance you'll come back with a deal.

Take a look at our checklist to get started. You might want to add factors that specifically suit your product or service, industry, or the sales prospect.

Checklist for a Successful Sales Call - Yes/No          

Is the prospect qualified?

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Have you confirmed the appointment?

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If you are driving to meet the prospect, do you have the correct directions? Do you know how long it will take to arrive on time -- or preferably, 10 or 15 minutes early?

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Have you organized the necessary materials, including brochures, business cards, sales aids and other information?

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Do you know the prospect's culture and environment?

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Do you understand the prospect's business structure and industry?

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Do you understand what drives the prospect's business and competitive environment?

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Do you understand what drives the prospect's business and competitive environment?

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Do you understand the dynamics behind the prospect's buying decisions? Are you aware of economic and other factors that could create resistance to the sale?

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Are you aware of the internal and external factors that could affect the timing of the sale?

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Have you double-checked to see if any factors have changed since your initial contact, including final checks of:

  • The prospect's website?
  • News reports, as well as business and economic reports.
  • Internal sources at the prospect's company who may have information about recent developments?

Do you have a list of questions to ask the prospect that can help gauge how to help the company with problems, challenges and growth opportunities?

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Have you taken a few moments to visualize your success? If the goal is to make the sale, that's the image you want to see. Of course, not every sales call is aimed at completing a sale. If the goal is to make some headway toward clinching a sale, visualize yourself and your prospect coming to an understanding. Remember, mental preparation can be half the battle.

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