Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Sales Joke of the Day (November 20) The Know It All.

A salesman for a major software company on the West Coast was demonstrating the latest version of their search engine software at a trade show.  He was extremely proud of the fact that their search engine was voice activated, and would respond to any question asked of it in English.    The salesman boasted that their software would be able to answer any question it was asked.  He promised that it would come up with the correct answer.

While everyone else asked the computer questions about mathematical problems and the circumference of the earth, one smart know it all decided to show off by asking the software program:  "Where is my father?"

A few seconds later the Siri-like voice replied:  "Your father is working in a bar in Chicago."

"Ha!" crowed the know-it-all.  "This supposedly infallible search engine is wrong.  My father died over a decade ago.  He's dead!"

The salesman was anxious not to lose face over this, so he came up with a suggestion.  "Perhaps if we rephrased the question, the search engine would understand it better?"

So the know it all amended the question to:  "Where is my mother's husband?" and waited for the reply.

After a few seconds the Siri-like voice replied:  "Your mother's husband is dead.  But your father is still working in a bar in Chicago."

Moral of the story.    True sales professionals know that in order to succeed at sales they have to be able to deal with all types of customers and prospects, including the dreaded know it all.   True professionals have learned that know it alls can turn a sure deal into a KIA.   So it's best to just pass these prospects on to a colleague who has time to waste, while you carry on finding real deals that can close.     What is KIA you ask?   No, it doesn't stand for know-it-all.   KIA stands for killed in action.

"The only true wisdom is in knowing that you know nothing."    -   Socrates