Your Goal is Not to Sell

Your Goal is Not to Sell – It’s to Connect

“Stop selling stuff.”

That’s what I tell retailers looking for a new, innovative way to approach the day. None think I am serious, but I am. I usually end up having to repeat myself.

“No really,” I say. “Stop selling stuff. Just stop.”

But my words are so far out in left field that folks just laugh and say something snarky like, “Yeah right, TG. Wouldn’t it be nice if that paid the bills.”

I assure them it will. That something like this will pay the bills.

This is precisely when one of two things happen. Either they 1) shake their heads and go back to the grind of their status quo, or 2) give in to my outlandish suggestion and ask for more of this craziness.

“OK, man. I’ll hear ya out,” they say.

“Now we’re talking,” I say, rubbing my hands together.

I then proceed to recommend they alert all staff that the new weekly goal is to sell nothing. Nothing at all. Instead, the new goal is to get to know customers. But there’s a caveat—they need to get to know them so well they learn a few things. And it’s these few things that take the place of the sale.

First off, they need to learn each customer’s name. A no-brainer, I know, but starting small is never a bad thing.

Second, they have to determine each customer’s eye color.

Third, in order to qualify for this not-required-to-sell-anything week, staffers must learn at least 3 personal details about each customer. And not the run of the mill stuff, either. Not whether the customer walks or runs (or neither), their weekly mileage, injuries sustained, or what events they’ve got coming up. Nope. That’s all too basic. I’m talking about details uncovered as the result of genuine conversation and inquiry. Discoveries made from establishing an authentic connection.

And here’s the thing—anyone who does this, even if they do it for only one day, generates bigger numbers than usual. Anyone with a brain can extrapolate why. We all know that genuine connection increases UPT, which increases transaction numbers, which increases customer satisfaction and staff purpose, yadda-yadda. Then whole nine.

But really, the more important end result is a stronger bond between two human beings.

You still worried about customer loyalty? Stop selling to people and start getting to know them. Like, for real.



Tom Griffen is a highly sought after trainer and presenter whose message transcends industries. He’ll help you raise the bar while you reinvent your business.

Contact him: make the change you’ve been talking about.

Also check out Tom’s January 2018 Walk Across America! YES…you can still hire him during this adventure! Book your dates today!


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