This is the ability to state what you need. It’s also an important emotional intelligence skill needed to create win-win business relationships. Salespeople lacking assertiveness turn into sales victims. They complain that prospects, customers, and peers take advantage of them. The reality is they lack the assertiveness to state what they need. Remember, you teach people how you want to be treated.
For example, salespeople lacking assertiveness write hundreds of proposals. They often don’t learn beforehand if the prospect is actually willing and able to invest in their services. Here’s the scenario: The salesperson is at the stage to discuss and agree on a budget. The salesperson asks the prospect for her range of investment in purchasing his product or service. She responds, “I have no idea — just put something together.”
The nonassertive salesperson goes along to get along. He spends valuable time putting together recommendations and sets up another meeting to share his solutions — and the budget. All of sudden the prospect has a budget, because she replies, “That’s more than I wanted to invest.”
It’s time for a quick reality check. Your prospect had a budget; otherwise, how could she tell you that your solutions are too high? Apply your self-awareness and recognize that you lacked the assertiveness to ask for what you needed. And what you needed before investing your valuable time was a determination if this prospect was willing or able to invest in your services.