Linda Hertz Group

My Medical Device Sales Career

I have not had much success selling people stuff they did not want or need.  When I sold in the high-tech space, I had much more success with companies and individuals who had a need for the solution that I was selling.  When selling medical devices, I had my best results with surgeons who had a sincere interest in my products that enhanced the quality of care for their patients.  I was not a private detective but I began to see a pattern. 

If this makes sense to you thus far, then it must be crystal clear that you or your sales people engage potential customers who want to use what you sell and minimize the time and effort you spend with others who have no interest in what you are selling.   Seems rather obvious, right?  I know what you are wondering now.  How will I know if the next prospect may have an interest in my product(s)?   The answer is that you will not at first.  This is precisely the time when you must put your “Big Boy Pants” on and start the selling process.  Are you ready?  I certainly hope so because you may not get another opportunity like this one.

Dwayne Wade and Charles Barkley have their Fave Five via T-Mobile while I too have a “Fabulous Five” which will allow you to differentiate between prospects and suspects. When you encounter a potential customer for the first time, be prepared to deliver the “Fabulous Five” and do so with passion.   I almost forgot to mention, be sure to make eye contact. 

1.      This is who I am!

2.      This is what I sell!

3.      This is why I do what I do!

4.      This is what I will do for you!

5.      Is this of interest to you?

At this point, say absolutely nothing but do get ready.   Welcome to the wonderful of sales and congratulations.  You may now experience first-hand what it feels like to get rejected.  It is an acquired taste but one you will get used to.  Many will tell you No, Maybe, Send me some information or Not Right Now.   If you hear something like this then the next words out of your mouth should be “Thanks for your time today, best of luck in the future and I look forward to staying in touch.  Enjoy the rest of your day!”  Unlike what you may hear and read from the various sales gurus and self-help books on how the key to be a selling mega-star is overcoming objections.  I am telling you to walk away.  I know that you want to dig in, participate in a cerebral sword fight but now is not the time.  Keep in mind, you are not giving up but rather making the decision to spend time with folks who get it, get you and have a need right now. 

Don't worry about selling everybody just the next one!

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Comment by Linda Hertz on February 12, 2011 at 11:46am

Yes...acquiring a taste for rejection!  That's a hard one and some industries the rate of rejection is higher than others.  I remember sitting in a parking lot at 4:00 pm on a Friday NOT wanting to go into yet another floor covering retailer to pitch rolls of floor covering (my BtoB sales days with Armstrong World Industry).  I was in my first job out of college and at the end of my first year saying to myself, "this sucks"....I sat there for 30 minutes not wanting to have the taste of rejection bleed into my TGIF...I skipped the possible taste of rejection and went for the taste of beer at the TGIF Spot where all my newly working friends would be as well; we were all in sales.  Now I know that is not what YOU meant by saying Walk Away.  


I will always remember that moment as the ultimate failure and I NEVER DID IT AGAIN...I at least forced myself to make the call and see if I could handle the objection without feeling rejected if I could not overcome it!  I began to is a numbers game (in that BtoB World), knock on the door, ask the right probing questions, and if the Objections were leading me in circles...leave my card...and go to the next account and the next account.  It ultimately increased my sales and one that worked GREAT when I started calling on Doctor Offices in the Medical Sales World to push my products from their doors into the hospitals where I ultimately needed to sell the product.


Knowing when to walk away DURING the sales call that becomes, as you call it, "a cerebral sword fight" is costing you; it's the Opportunity Cost of making more calls with customers who's objections you can overcome and get the sale.  Now isn't that a much better taste.....I think they call it a taste of success!  It makes you hungry for more!


Thanks for another thought evoking write...




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