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Is a Good Offense Always the Best Defense?

By Dave Mattson / March 23, 2010

It’s March Madness time, which I enjoy, but not always for the same reasons my friends do. Because I’m in sales, it’s fun just to watch the teams execute their strategies and then try to figure out how these strategies apply to my own profession. And what stands out, season after season, is how predictable…

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Too Much Product Knowledge Can Cost You

By Dave Mattson / March 15, 2010

If you’re like most sales professionals, you work hard to learn as much as you can about your product or service. You take pride in how much you know about your business. When you can answer any technical question that might come up in a call with a prospect, you feel confident. That’s only natural.…

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Be Friendly with Your Customers, But Never Friends

By Dave Mattson / March 8, 2010

Hidden in the uproar over Mark McGwire’s admission that he used steroids was a lesson for sales professionals. You might remember the moment, which has been replayed over and over: When McGwire hit his record-breaking homerun, Sammy Sosa-one of the Cardinal slugger’s opponents-raced in from the outfield to hug him. It “looked great on TV,”…

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How Sales Professionals Are Like Shrinks

By Dave Mattson / February 14, 2010

We don’t ordinarily think of sales as one of the “helping professions,” but maybe we should. People tell their problems to psychologists and clergymen. They pour out their hearts to their neighborhood bartender. But they tell their troubles to sales professionals, too, so we should develop our “helping profession” skills. I have often noticed, when…

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Turn Bad Times to Your Benefit

By Dave Mattson / February 1, 2010

The end of summer’s gloomy retail sales figures, coming after two months of modest gains, are giving rise to considerable pessimism among sales professionals. While understandable, this pessimism is also, I believe, completely unwarranted but not for the reasons you might think.
 Yes, back-to-school sales at the big chain stores are rotten. The housing market…

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With Economy Recovering, Sales Professionals Can Start Climbing Again

By Dave Mattson / December 1, 2009

When the economy took a nosedive, most sales professionals quickly responded in one of two ways. There were those who lost confidence and basically hunkered down, hoping to wait out the recession. They adopted a “base camp” mentality, wanting only to hold onto what business they had until the weather cleared, and they could start…

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Fear of Technological Change Can Help You Sell

By Dave Mattson / November 25, 2009

I’m going to let you in on a secret. There are hundreds of consultants out there that will tell you they fully understand Twitter and other trendy “social media” tools. They will also tell you exactly how they can help you use these tools-at a steep price, of course. Well, most of them are blowing…

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How to Lower Stress in Sales

By Dave Mattson / September 25, 2009

The rotten economy, if you haven’t noticed, may be taking a toll on your health. “Today’s economy is stressing people out, and stress has been linked to a number of illnesses-such as heart disease, high blood pressure and increased risk for cancer,” according to a new study in the July 15 issue of the American…

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7 Tips for Writing a Job Posting for Salespeople

By Dave Mattson / September 15, 2007

When it is time to hire new salespeople, hiring managers often just dig up an outdated job posting and add it to the “Careers” section of their website. Later, during the interviews, they are surprised at the lack of qualified salespeople seated on the other side of their desk. But to obtain great talent, you…

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