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Stop Telling Salespeople How to Price?

Here’s a fun fact:

Salespeople don’t like anyone telling them how to price.

Of course, this isn’t actually news to you, right?

After all, you might have witnessed first-hand the barely-contained anger at the mere suggestion. You might have been the recipient of the narrow-eyed glare. And, you’ve probably even overheard the derogatory utterances around the water cooler.

So, you get it. Salespeople don’t like it. Not one bit.

Regardless, if you’re ever going to improve pricing performance and profitability, you just have to swallow hard and shoulder their ire. Right?

Well, not necessarily…

Because here’s another fun fact:

Salespeople do want to know what customers are willing to pay.

Did you catch that? On the one hand, salespeople don’t want to be told how to price. But on the other hand, they do want to know what customers are willing to pay.

While these two notions may appear to be in complete opposition, I assure you that they are not.

You see, it’s human nature to want to be in-control of the decisions that affect one’s livelihood. And it’s also human nature to react negatively when we feel as though that control is being usurped.

This is much more than just a matter of semantics.

Salespeople definitely want to know what their customers are willing to pay. To them, this is a valuable nugget of sales intelligence that helps them achieve their goals. However, once they have this piece of information, they want to be the ones to decide what to do with it.

Again, it’s human nature.

So, if telling your salespeople how to price is creating a lot of animosity, maybe you should think about telling them what their customers are willing to pay instead. You’ll likely achieve similar results, but with much less conflict…because you’re working with human nature, rather than against it.

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