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We’ve all heard of active listening but do we really practice it? And what can this skill mean to our sales and customer service teams?

Here’s how we apply the concept to understanding what customers really want and need:

  1. Listen to learn: Approach each conversation with the goal of learning something.

Think of the other person as someone who can teach you—about their business, of course, but also their company culture and any personal worries or biases that could affect your sales prospects.

  1. Hold that thought: Avoid thinking about what you want to say next.

Instead focus on the speaker. It’s ok to allow a pause when she or he is done talking so you can form a thoughtful response.

  1. Dive deeper: Ask open ended questions to draw out details and attitudes.

Ask questions that can’t be answered with a “yes” or “no.” For example, “Tell me more about . . .” or “How do you envision . . .”

  1. Double check: Repeat back what you’re hearing to check your accuracy.

It could be as simple as, “Do I have it right that you were disappointed with that system?” or “It sounds like the team didn’t like the workflow. Is that right?”

  1. Hear more than what’s said: Listen for total meaning.

Words are usually the easy part. But what is this person saying through body language or tone of voice? Are they expressing confidence, frustration, disappointment, admiration? Ask for clarification on your hunches, like “It sounds like you’re on the fence about that . . . “

What do you think? Could these help you connect better on sales calls and learn more from prospects?

And finally, here are some bonus tech tips for your sales teams from us:

  • When you integrate Docusign with our Sales Management app, you can get auto-updates to your CRM whenever someone signs a document
  • You can also have Salesforce or Quick Base send an automatic response to customers when it’s time to follow up.

So listen with both ears and let these apps do more work for you. Just another way we’re trying to make your sales process simpler.

Thanks for reading!


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Author: CloudBase Services