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  • Jim Mcwhirter

Yeah But……………

Updated: Nov 2, 2020

We all say and think it sometimes.

What about when we have a prospect say this to us early in a discovery meeting?

Yeah but … we are not evaluating making a change right now.

Yeah but….even if it were better, we have no budget and you’re going to be expensive.

Yeah but … we tried your service a couple of years ago and it didn’t go well.

Yeah (That’s all very interesting) but ……. That doesn’t really apply to us here.

Woah man? it’s just a discussion and a couple of questions! Why the objections out of the gate.

Something isn’t clicking here!

Coach’s Break Down:

When confronted with change, yeah but is a common initial mental position people have, whether they state it out loud or not. Their ego or emotional state is defending their position or status quo. It is simply a subconscious defense mechanism and it is normal, okay and human.

The underlying message that is being sent is “I am not wrong, and I am not going to listen to what you are saying.”

People defend their position all the time. Although it may come off as a little aggressive, I prefer a yeah but response to complacent acknowledgement.

It also tells me what kind of person I am dealing with and that this person may be emotionally attached to the status quo, current state, current vendor or just really don’t like making change.

Heck the prospect is engaged enough to defend the status quo and to me that’s opportunity.

Game on!

What we don’t do:

Although our instinct when we hear yeah but is to defend our position the last thing you want to do right now is get into an argument. If someone who has already sketched a line in the sand, you do not want to make the line deeper.

Although it’s game on Yeah but….. Is not a call for battle.

Remember you are trying to make a sale. You didn’t do all the heavy lifting to get in front of a buyer to try and win an argument of wits and logic.

To advance a sale our prospect needs to be open and receptive to a business conversation. HOWEVER, handled well, this MENTAL RESISTANCE can be a doorway into the business conversation to create conversational momentum.

What we do:

Agree with them and deflect to another question. Not in a methodical or emotional way but let it flow in the conversation.

If we agree with them then ask a completely different question. In other words, go with the resistance, we have a better chance of bringing down their defense shields and getting them into a 2- way business conversation about something relevant that is outside the status quo and therefore does not need to be defended.

……Yeah you’re probably right..

Complete the sentence……

………You are probably okay right now. A lot of people I talk to are. Question

………Our unit costs for some items can be higher than if you shop around. There is always a better price and sometimes someone else and sometimes it’s us. Question

…… We did have some issues a couple of years ago that have been corrected and you could have been impacted. Question

………Yeah you’re probably right – like many companies we have had to cut back on our last mile delivery. Believe me I wish there was a way we could have dedicated delivery to every account. Question

Again, we need to get the defense shield down not cranked up through an argument.

Conclusion :

When you hear yeah but , roll with it and do not get aggressive or defensive. Use our strong communication skills and emotional IQ to avoid the argument and defuse the challenge.

Pay attention to the message you are sending the other person. It should be I am not going to fight you I am only here to have a business conversation.

Try this next time you hear Yeah but ….. and see if you can get back into the business conversation.

Keep the Momentum!!

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