The Most Dangerous Sales Number

A client of mine recently emailed me and mentioned that they lost two of their biggest clients.

There is a “dangerous” sales number that you need to know about.

It’s the number one. Let me explain.

The sales rep in charge of the accounts had no idea why this happened. His relationship with both organizations was good, and the clients seemed happy with their work.

Upon further investigation, we realized an important commonality between these two accounts. In both instances, the rep had an established relationship with only one decision-maker.

Is this starting to make sense?

In the first organization, the decision-maker retired, having his son step in. And, in the second, the decision-maker moved on to another company.

In both organizations, the rep assumed that his rapport and relationship with the single individuals meant rapport and a relationship with the entire organization.

As he found out (the hard way), he was wrong! In both instances, the new decision-makers brought in their trusted associations to take over the rep’s services.

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One is the most dangerous number in sales!

In each of your accounts, you must have multiple points of contact and relationships. You must make it so that a network of contacts within an organization can vouch for your product or service, so that when shifts occur (as they inevitably do), you’re not finding yourself in a similar situation.

You want to be able to have other members of the organization say “We can’t get rid of them! They do amazing work!”

Beyond just this, you should also have an idea of who likely successors are in decision-making roles. Had this particular sales rep known that his client’s son was “next in line” and the change was incoming, he could’ve proactively worked to establish that relationship ahead of time.

We all want to be number one. But, in sales, one can be the most dangerous number.


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