Many of us forget about the days of having to pull over and to use pay phones and the value of quarters to make...

Many of us forget about the days of having to pull over and to use pay phones and the value of quarters to make a call.

Imagine you are walking downtown and a homeless person kindly asks if you have a dollar for four quarters. Considering quarters are significantly more useful than a dollar bill you oblige and take him up on the offer. With out thinking too much of the situation, you hand over the one dollar bill and pocket the four quarters he gave you. Before you turn to walk away, he asks if you could spare a quarter. Instantly you are in his grips, and  chance of you passing over a quarter is almost guaranteed at that point.

4 Quarters for a dollar


He has made a connection with you that you feel is completely fair and established a relationship with you in asking for a dollar bill in exchange for his four quarters, then closes his sale by asking for a quarter. Now considering you have already acknowledged his presence and agreed on the first interaction it is very difficult for anyone to turn down the request down.

Far too frequently we pitch a sale without establishing any credibility or relationship with the customer. People are very closed off and on guard toward sales people and the value needs to be placed on the interaction and relationship before the sale pitch is initiated.


What are some of your experiences with good sales people?

  • Stephen Guise

    May 1, 2013 #1 Author

    An excellent example. It would be tough to turn him down in that case. I would be a bit wary that he was planning that all along, but I still would give him a quarter. Or maybe I’d give him the whole dollar to start with.

    I worked at Staples a few years ago and this older gentleman Dave was a great salesmen. He did a nice job of connecting with the customer, listening, and pin-pointing their needs. His sense of humor and “gentle persistence” were also effective for him. I think he was one of the top salesmen in the whole company at the time.


    • Growth Guided

      May 1, 2013 #2 Author

      That is a great point Stephen. We don’t need to be overpowered into a sale but rather supported. I have always believed people are smart enough and well educated enough about the product they are considering and they just need a slight agreement and understanding to help them through.


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