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The Window Salesman

By Gary Hanley

Allow me to introduce you to Terry, a window from England. If I take you back about 20 years, you’d know Terry as a complete newbie… a not-long-since teenager who was wet behind the ears in just about everything he attempted. The kind of person who couldn’t sell false teeth to his own Granny, let alone compete with the other salespeople in the industry. You know, the kind who could sell snow to Eskimos.

So. to add a twist to this scenario, Terry’s boss decides to send him out on a practical field on his first day. He throws him right into the deep end by asking him to visit an interested prospect at the posh end of town… where the big is in Windows/Double-glazing sales. So off he goes.

He was extremely nervous. With his hands shaking and his knees nobbling, he approaches the front door and thuds the door knocker several times. An oldish woman approaches and, after his first shaking introduction, she invites him in.

He stays there for over 3 hours. Then, after dozens of cups of tea and mounds of biscuits, the woman signs a contract and purchases over £7000 of windows (that’s over $11,000 in U.S. dollars!)

And, Here’s The REAL Kicker – The woman had already spoken with 6 other dynamite glazing salesmen that week. ALL of them offered her a cheaper quote! That’s right – Terry’s price was the MOST expensive. He was also the most inexperienced salesman there ever was.

So, what happened in the background? And moreover, how can you replicate these powerful sales techniques to step up a notch on your own profit ladder? Here comes the secret.

The woman said, “She liked the young lad more than the others.”

That’s ALL there was to it. She didn’t care about the extra expense. Even the other slick salesmen couldn’t persuade her to pay LESS than this young chap was asking for.

The truth is, this lad’s first impression shone brighter than any of the sales talk the others subjected the woman to. First impressions count, and this young lad’s courtesy, attitude, politeness and likability are what closed the sale. Not the sales hype. Not the low prices with the gigantic over-hyped benefits. But, the actual ‘personality’ and ‘impression’ the kid honestly gave was all that was required.

If you market your own products and services, consider what impression you are giving to your prospects. If you appeal to them, then you’ve already done half of the . If this means redesigning your presentation, then so be it. If this means going out of your way to be polite, helpful and giving the best possible shopping experience to your , then so be it.

Is it really too much work to secure those big sales? I’ll leave you to ponder on that thought.


Having been associated with the sales and marketing industry for so many years, I can’t help but appreciate this story. My father, God rest his soul, turned me on to the golden rule in dealing with people, and letting customers know how much you care about their welfare, not their . Send this along to those you know in the sales biz. – Pete Barkelew – Editor



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