There are two big problems in professional selling today that throw sales people out of alignment.  Have you ever thrown your back out?  Then you know the sharp pain that comes when that happens, as well as, the relief after visiting a Chiropractor.  Many sales people are experiencing similar challenges and “pain” in their sales because they are using sales techniques and behaviors that we not designed for their type of sale.  Even worse they are being confused by sales experts who teach good material without explaining where to apply it.



The Simple Sale

There is a huge difference between a transactional (“Simple”) sale and a consultative (“Complex”) sale.  As you can see from the infographic, a “simple sale” is one where the sales person acts more like a customer service representative. The focus is on the helping the buyer select the right product to purchase in the most efficient manner possible.


The Complex Sale

A “complex sale” is one where the sales person acts more like a consultant and expert adviser.  The focus is on identifying the needs of the buyer and developing a custom solution together that effectively helps them achieve their goals.   Both types of sales are important and valid, they are just different from each other.  It should also be self evident that the skills, attitudes, behaviors and knowledge needed to succeed in each type of sale are different as well.


Running Into the Wall

Here is the problem I see in many sales organizations around the country:  Sales people are using the right selling skills in the wrong selling context.  What I mean is, they are using simple, or transactional, selling skills in a complex, or consultative, selling environment.  Not all selling skills and behaviors translate from one type of sale to the other.  In fact when well meaning sales people intentionally or unintentionally do this they run into a wall.  Their buyers view them as less relevant than their competitors.  They are seen as good, but not great resources to rely on.  They are perceived as a “nice person” but not necessary for the growth of the company.  In short, they are viewed as “disposable”.



So Easy To Find

At the local book store or online you can find thousands of sales training books, videos, articles and podcasts by some very smart people.  In my non-scientific opinion roughly about 70% of the sales training material out there focuses on skills and behaviors for the Simple or Transaction type of sale, while only about 30% focus on the Complex or Consultative type of sale.  Because Simple or Transactional sales training material is so prevalent and easy to find, it is the stuff that most sales people run into when they are looking for additional training.


Seeing Is Believing

The problem I see is sales trainers, authors and educators typically do not describe whether their material applies to a simple or complex sale.  Meaning, they don’t provide a selling context that the regular sales person can use to determine where and how to apply their material.  What happens as a result is most sales people simply assume that you can use transactional selling skills in a consultative selling context or environment.  Nothing could be further from the truth.


The Disposable Sales Person

As was mentioned earlier, when sales people apply simple or transactional selling behaviors and skills to a complex or consultative selling environment they run into a wall.  Their clients use them occasionally for small orders but don’t involve them in bigger projects.  Their prospects just ask for quotes and not solutions.  They are frustrated that they aren’t generating as many leads or closing sales as frequently as they should.  Because they are using the right skills in the wrong context they are becoming more “disposable” to their prospects and clients.



If you sell in a complex, or consultative, selling environment, I want to help you learn what skills you need to use to succeed.  On October 27th at 11am MDT I will be hosting a special sales training webinar titled “Avoid Becoming a Disposable Sales Person”.  You are welcome to attend for FREE as my guest if you use the below link to register.  Other links will take you into a payment process.


We have limited seating so register now for the event and learn advanced strategies to help your prospects view you as a highly sought after, valuable and trusted sales professional.  Learn how to close more sales and retain clients for longer periods of time.  It will be well worth your time and you will be glad you registered.


Registration URL:


See you on the webinar!


Terry L. Hansen

Toll Free: 844-205-5054