Will the real king please stand up? Eh, not you, Sparky!

Will the real king please stand up? Eh, not you, Sparky!

Written By Jeffrey Gitomer

KING OF SALES, The author of seventeen best-selling books including The Sales Bible, The Little Red Book of Selling, and The Little Gold Book of Yes! Attitude. His live coaching program, Sales Mastery, is available at gitomer.me.

Will the real king please stand up? Eh, not you, Sparky!

Jeffrey,I’m trying to build a professional sales team.I need to educatemy CEO about the importance of treating salespeople as kings. Theyshould have good locations for sales meetings, with good food, whichresults in jealousy from others in the organization. Can you pleasetell me how you feel about this? (I know your opinion from yourmaterial, but I would like to see it in writing so that I can show myCEO.) Thanks, Al

CEOsmay need an education, but not from salespeople. What they need fromsalespeople is more of their first name: SALES.

Salespeopleare not kings — they just think they are. Primarily stemming fromthe Red Motley quote from 1946, “Nothing happens until a sale ismade.” While this is a partially accurate statement, there’s alot of prep before the sale, it’s a lot of work to deliver thesale, and there’s a lot of work after the sale that others on theteam have to make happen in order for the sale to take place, andkeep reoccurring.

WhenI got this “treat us like kings” email, I immediately thought ofa chess board, and wondered which piece salespeople were. And as thepieces flashed through my mind, I realized that on the chessboard,salespeople are every piece BUT the king.

Butlike any chess master, salespeople have to be versatile, think threemoves in advance, and watch out for the competition. They have to bewilling to make bold moves within a certain time limit, know when tostrike, and when to play defense — especially when the king isexposed.

Inorder to win the match for supremacy, salespeople have to study thegame and, when playing, concentrate on each single move andopportunity. Not just gambits, but strategy, and psychology. Winnersstudy andpractice. Winners love to play the game. Winners are passionateplayers. Winners play to win, and are focused on every move whetherthey make it, or the competition makes it.

Andwhether they are willing to admit it or not, they are also painfullyaware of the potential consequences of every move. Including losingyour king.

Everplay chess against someone good?Prettyscary. Hopefully it’s not your competition.

Everplay “sales” against someone good?Wakeup, Sparky! It IS your competition.

Haveyou prepared for the game?Doyou have a strategy to win?Doyou know who you are playing against?Doyou have an opening move?Howconfident are you that you’ll win?Doyou have alternate moves?Howmany gambits do you have at your disposal?Areyou willing to risk the consequences of your moves in order to getthe king?

Ibought a book a few months ago. The title is EveryGreat Chess Player Was Once A Beginner.Wow! It was one of those AHA! moments. Every great salesperson wasonce a beginner. Think about your beginnings.

Youwere a lot of things, and wore a lot of hats. One of them was notking. You were enthusiastic, eager to learn, willing, and humble. Youwere open to new ideas. Your mind was a sponge for all kinds ofknowledge and information. I hope it’s still that way. Or has asmall amount of success changed your ways? Don’t worry about yourtitle, just keep doing it like it was your first day, and make a tonof sales.

KINGWHO? The reality is, you’d better know who the REAL king is: Yourexisting and prospective customers.

Likea king on the chessboard, they can only move slowly, one space at atime, and must be protected at all costs. Every player, everysalesman, must know the king’s presence and what his options arefor survival.

REALITYOF THE GAME: King? No! — Pawn? Sometimes. All the rest of thepieces? YES! Especially the queen. Queen is the most powerful and themost versatile piece. Maybe that’s why much of the time women outsellmen.


Ifyou want a few more chess gambits that convert to selling, go towww.gitomer.com, register if you’re a first-time visitor, and enterthe word CHESS in the GitBit box.