Is the “sell me this pen” question still relevant?

Possibly more than ever.

On the one hand, in SaaS these days, we hopefully are all selling solutions. Not random widgets. So used car techniques and such have little place in a SaaS AE’s toolkit.

On the other hand … many sales reps have gotten soft. They’ve been spoon-fed leads by well-funded machines, with limited competition and tons of support. And they’ve often done it with mediocre quota attainment. Yes, this is still sales. But it’s not that much like sales at a small, unknown, less funded start-up.

This may sound a bit mean, but I’d go far as to say many SaaS sales reps at established companies … aren’t that great at sales.

So bring out the old “sell me this pen” question. Better yet, do it as “sell me my product”.

Do the old thing where in the second interview at least, the prospective rep has to sell you your product.

If they can’t do it by interview #2 … probably pass. At least for your early reps.

View original question on quora

Published on November 4, 2018

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