Fear? Uncertainty? Doubt? (…or just dumb?)

By November 5, 2013Uncategorized

The guy’s title is National Sales Manager.  He’s in his 20 X 30 (i.e., very expensive) trade show booth getting set up for the show opening the next day.  He’s casual.  He’s loose. He’s got his value proposition down clean, cold and concise.  He’s ready for 2 full days of engaging with customers and prospects.  He’s getting his team – all right there in the booth – fired up to tell the story and make some sales.

customerfearUp walks the Trade Show Radio producer.  “We’ve been hired by the show sponsor to shine a spotlight on exhibitors like you as an extra thank you for being here.  We’ll tee you up to deliver the messages you need to deliver to your prospects and customers.  It’ll be broadcast live, piped through the exhibit hall speakers and recorded and edited so you can use your interview on your web site, in e-newsletters, etc.  There are several time slots still available.  Here.  Pick one!”  And this silver-tongued master of sales, leader of the national sales team says…

“Oh my no!”

Huh?  Really?  “I must have misspoken,” says the radio producer.  “You’ve already bought and paid for this showcase spot at the show, AND you get the edited recording of your company’s value proposition to use however you want for nothing.”

“Oh my no!”

What’s your reaction to this true story?  (Astonishingly, it’s not the only example!)  What’s your opinion of a sales leader who refuses (or is afraid) to tell the organization’s story; to articulate the organization’s value proposition?  Would you hire such a person to be your top sales exec?  Would you hire such a person for any sort of sales job?  Or are the trade show sponsor and the radio producer misguided?