Defusing High-Pressure Salesmen

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Image of snake oil salesman via Wikipedia
Over at Thinking Directions, Jean Moroney offers some good advice for countering the kind of salesmen who give the profession a bad name. Over the years, I have become quite comfortable with getting rid of salesmen, especially when I know I am not interested or have lots of options, but I still found her advice worthwhile.

Suppose you are in the market for something, but want to be ready for the misfortune of ending up with a high-pressure salesman. Or, for some reason -- like it's the only dealership for a hundred miles -- you choose to deal with such a person, anyway. Then you might want to go over her scripts for pushing back against the pressure. For example:
"When would be a good time?"

"That assumes that this is high enough priority for me to make time. I don't see that. You are welcome to send me written materials, and if I see from them that this would be worth more of my time, I'll set up a call with you. But right now, my priorities lie elsewhere."
There are two other scripts, along with explanations of the kinds of fallacies that underlie the questions and the rationales for the answers. And all of these are built on the underlying premise of maintaining control of when you do your thinking. This is worthwhile because there is no end to what sleazy salesmen will cook up to get a sale. When he goes off script, you will at least have the right general approach in the back of your mind to be able to resist the pressure.

-- CAV

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