I recently listened to a sales trainer’s seminar about cold-calling prospects. It started off with bringing up the weather to build rapport.

Excuse me did you say, the weather?

If I get interrupted by a phone call at my desk by someone asking me about the weather, I take that as a total absence of respect for my time.

The next piece of advice was to ask a follow-up question. But the question was so complex, it reminded me of one of the three-part questions I got on my World Lit exam in high school. I actually didn’t understand how someone would answer the question and maybe that was the point. Perhaps it was supposed to be complicated?

Either way, we have all been coached and trained to build rapport when it comes to selling. And yet in today’s business climate (no pun intended) one of the best ways to build rapport with someone is to demonstrate that you respect their time. That means, not chatting up people about weather patterns. Prospects see right through that.

This goes for phone calls, emails, DMs, you name it.

One of my recent favorite pieces of advice when it comes to emails (which you could apply to any other method) is from Samantha McKenna at #samsales who gives this advice: Put the niceties at the end!

Example: “Hey Robert, How are you? I hope this email finds you well and that you had an amazing weekend! It was so hot where we are…”

You know how these friendly email openers go.

In today’s marketplace, no one needs it. They get it. You’re selling, so sell. Get to the point as politely but as quickly as possible.

From a Go for No perspective, we ask a disqualifying question as early in the process as possible. Let’s respect everyone’s time. Get the no early and if there’s common ground, let’s keep going. Oh, and that’s where the niceties came back in. At the end of the process. After we got to the point.

So is it warm today where you are?

Comments? Please let me know your thoughts. And if you liked this post, please share! – AW

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