For the vast majority of the population – well, practically every single person other than those in cemeteries – life consists of problems.

High quality problems and low quality problems, big problems and small problems, long-term and short-term problems, problems we are happy to have and others that seem to be the worst thing we can imagine at the time.

We as humans are problem solving creatures, we are born to overcome challenges and put ourselves in positions where we can advance to the next level of quality in living.

Which is why when running our own business we need to be able to face the fact that problems exist in this world, and that’s a good thing because it means we give ourselves the chance to be the solution to those problems.

As business owners, we can typically be quite positive, innovative, half glass full kind of people.

We thrive in energetic environments where a world of possibility trumps a gasp of negativity any day of the week. We are doers, thinkers, achievers and believers – yet when it comes to closing sales in the very business that is built on a mindset of possibility, it is those rose-coloured glasses that can become our biggest obstacle to sales and business success.

For so many business owners, talking about the problems that people are facing seems to be uncomfortable, unfamiliar and preferably swept under the rug.

Yet it is only to solve a problem in their life, that the vast majority of our buyers actually purchase anything.

Our buyers are buying for one reason more than any other in this life: To solve a problem that is having an impact on them, right now.

If the problem didn’t exist, wasn’t big enough of a problem, or the consequences of the problem sustained long-term weren’t scary enough, they wouldn’t take any action worth spending money on to overcome it.

Understand: In a world where no one is able to express and overcome problems, no sales exist. 

“Rose-coloured glasses” – a term used to describe someone’s perception that is perpetually better than the reality of the situation – is therefore a professional salesperson’s worst enemy.

Without the ability to take the glasses off, see things for how they really are, and suggest solutions to evident problems accordingly is a major killer not only of closing current sales for sales professionals and business owners, but also seeing opportunities for new potential sales right in front of their eyes.

Positivity is an incredible thing – and its proven to be a huge driver in many facets of business – strategy design, innovation, culture, motivation, the list could go on for a long while

But when it comes to closing sales, it is critical to understand that the majority of sales are sitting in the one place where so many dare not to venture in the modern world – the area where the ‘tough’ conversations need to be had.

The area that is OK to highlight a problem, knowing the solution can be given at a moment’s notice.

The area where consequences of the problem are freely discussed, and responsibly dealt with by offering a solution when required.

The area where it’s OK to get angry, upset or confused about a current life situation, knowing that the solution to overcome those perceivably ‘negative’ emotions can be supplied.

The area where rose-coloured glasses are off limits.

And true problem solving takes their place.

Darcy J Smyth is the lead trainer of the Tonal Persuasion Method for Sales – a methodology designed to ensure you are helping your buyer understand their problems, and provide the most fitting solution in a way that makes the dreaded ‘Hard Sell’ a thing of the past.


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