Would You Buy a Product from a Bad Sales Person?

We’re in the process of looking for a new Applicant Tracking System (ATS) for our recruiting firm. We’ve had 3 demos from 3 different companies and if I had to choose from the demos, I wouldn’t buy any of them. What does that tell you? We’ve had crappy sales people trying to sell to us. That’s what they were doing, just trying to sell TO us but not really learning what we wanted from the product. That’s bad Sales 101. I’m “just a recruiter” but I know what I want from our ATS and my boss certainly knows what he wants from the system, but not one of these sales people showed us what we wanted. They didn’t even ask us what we wanted. It appears they each have a “canned” demo and can’t figure out that they should plan for a sales call. Don’t they realize that in today’s market they can’t sell that way anymore. There are too many products on the market to try and sell the same features and functions to everyone. If they can’t customize their one hour demo to each person in some way, I don’t want to buy from them. It really doesn’t seem like it would be that hard to ask up front, what are the 3 most important features you want from this ATS system or better yet what are the 3 most important problems you want to solve with this product? And then, figure out if your product does what we want. If it does, show us those features first, then show us everything else. One of our team members wrote on our internal message board while the person was doing the demo: “Salespeople that don’t know what they need to demo annoy me. How can he close the deal if he doesn’t know what we need?” The interesting thing here is, he didn’t close the deal and probably won’t. While we may be a small firm and aren’t buying a million dollar deal, it’s the little things that can push a sale over the edge. I think my boss could have prepared the sales people to be more successful success by asking them ahead of time to specifically prepare something more custom for us, but I think he was testing them. They all failed. Sales people, if you want to sell something prepare for your demo, ask questions ahead of time and if you don’t know how to customize the demo, ask somebody in your company to help you. With all the technology available today, it’s pretty easy to make a few changes to a slide to meet your customers needs. If there are any ATS sales people out there that want to sell an ATS system with good reporting, reach out to us. We want a good salesperson to sell us one!  


Keenan is A Sales Guy Inc’s CEO/President and Chief Antagonist. He’s been selling something to someone for his entire life. He’s been teaching and coaching almost as long. With over 20 years of sales experience, which he’ll tell you he doesn’t give a shit about, Keenan has been influencing, learning from and shaping the world of sales for a long time. Finder of the elephant in the room, Keenan calls it as he sees it and lets nothing or no one go unnoticed.