World Class Selling

World Class Selling Picture

The book, World Class Selling, by Roy Chitwood (founder of the Track Selling sales process) is an effective and insightful sales book. It is well worth reading for both new and experienced salespeople alike.

Below I have summarized the key points from the book to give you a brief overview of the book. But, I do encourage you to pick up a copy, read, and learn.


What is selling?

  • Uncovering a problem or discovering a need
  • Offering a way to solve that problem or fill that need
  • Persuading the prospect to buy or act now

Requirements of an effective salesperson

  • Understand the customer and help the customer succeed
    • The purpose of making your sales call is to be of service to the customer.
    • Your customer prospects buy not so much because they understand your product or service, but because you understand them.
  • Quickly develop a rapport and trust with customers
    • Because most prospects have had negative experiences with ineffective salespeople, they have negative expectations of you at first.
    • People buy from you because they like you.
  • Be proactive
    • If a salesperson initiates calling a customer to make sure there is satisfaction, it puts him or her in a much different position that if he or she received a call from a customer and had to react to it.
  • Passion
    • “Give me a salesperson who gets excited. When salespeople get excited, they get the customers excited. When customers get excited, they buy.” Walter Chrysler
  • Fortitude
    • “It doesn’t matter how many times you get knocked down that counts. It’s how many times you get up that counts.” Rocky Marciano
  • Prospector
    • If you can’t prospect, you can’t sell.
    • If you don’t have ample prospects, you’re not going to have many customers.
  • Listener
    • The open secret to getting your prospects to like you is: simply listen to them.
    • No matter how busy your prospects are, you’ll usually find they have plenty of time to talk about what they want to talk about with a salesperson who sincerely listens.
  • Effective at managing time and the work
    • Be aware of those ‘golden hours’ in your workday when you are most successful at contacting and meeting with prospects.   Don’t waste this valuable time doing less productive tasks, such as paperwork.
    • Never make a sales call without having clear cut objectives about what you want to accomplish on that call.
    • Successful salespeople will form the habit to do the things necessary even though it may be things they dislike doing.


But, most salespeople are not effective

  • Four out of five salespeople a customer meets are mediocre, incompetent, or downright ineffective.


The Five Buying Decisions all Customers Make (in order)

  • Buying decisions
      • About the salesperson
      • About the company
      • About the product or service
      • About the price
      • About the time to buy
  • People buy emotionally then justify their decision logically.
  • People buy from you for their reasons, not your reasons. 

The Six Buying Motives of Customers

  • The Six Buying Motives
      • Desire for gain
      • Fear of loss
      • Comfort and convenience
      • Security and protection
      • Pride of ownership
      • Satisfaction of emotion
  • Don’t expect your prospects to be forthright and honest about the real reason that motivates them to buy.


Seven Steps to Sales Success

    1. Approach
    2. Qualification
    3. Agreement on need
    4. Sell the company
    5. Fill the need
    6. Act of commitment
    7. Cement the sale


  • Introduce yourself professionally
    • Psychologists tell us people make a lasting impression on others in the first three to five minutes of their meeting.
  • Smile, ask good questions, listen, compliment
    • “Man who cannot smile should not open store.” Chinese Proverb
    • “The greatest human need is the need to be appreciated.” William James
  • To sell yourself, let your prospects do the talking.



  • The purpose of qualification is to help your prospects determine exactly what they need. Then you gear the rest of your presentation to meeting those needs.
  • To qualify well, peak performers prepare a list of questions before they make a presentation to the prospect.
  • Transition statement to move from Approach to Qualification
    • “I would like to tell you about my product or service; however, in order for me to do the best job I possibly can for you. I need to ask you a couple of questions. Is that all right?”
  • Ask open ended questions that cannot be answered with a “yes” or “no”.
    • Open ended questions avoid the atmosphere of a third degree grilling of the customer.
    • Open Ended, Fact Finding Questions
      • “What kind of product delivery system do you have?”
    • Open Ended, Feeling Finding Questions
      • “How is your present product delivery system working for you?”
    • Other good open ended questions
      • “May I ask what you like most about…”
      • “Would it be fair to ask what you like least about…”
    • Question to ask on repeat visits or subsequent calls
      • “Has anything changed?”


Agreement on Need

  • Get an agreement on the customer’s wants or needs by giving a capsule summary
    • “As I understand it, you are looking for something that will [summarize the important information you have gathered by your questioning]. Is that correct?


Sell the Company

  • Selling the company is required because the prospect makes the decision about the company before deciding about the value of your product or service.
    • The main objective of selling the company is to help your prospect decide that your company has integrity and is able to perform as promised.
  • Question to begin the “Sell the Company” step
    • “May I ask how much information you have about our company?”
  • Respond to all comments (especially negative comments) with
    • “I understand. Let me quickly cover a couple of things that I think would be important to me if I were in your position.”
    • Prospects want acknowledgement that their salesperson has heard their complaint and a statement of intent to fix the situation.


Fill the Need

  • In the “Fill the Need” step, you will show your prospects precisely how your product or service solves their problems or fills their needs as identified in the “Qualification” and “Fill the Need” steps
  • Here is where you demonstrate the features and benefits of your product or service
    • Feature
      • Physical characteristics of the product; dimensions of the service
    • Benefit
      • A benefit answers the prospect’s unspoken question, “What will it do for me?
    • The heart of the presentation is this discussion of the feature / benefits
      • “There are several important features that I’d like to tell you about our product or service.”
      • Name a feature
      • Paint a vivid word picture of the benefit that the feature provides
  • But, do not overwhelm the customer with features and benefits
    • Keep your presentation focused on the things (features and benefits as determined by the questioning) of greatest importance to this specific prospect
    • “There are dozens of sound, legitimate reasons why someone would buy the product or service you sell, but only a few of these reasons are important to each individual prospect.”
      • Thus, stress only the features and benefits that zero in on those specific reasons.
  • After explaining the features and benefits, ask:
    • “Do you have any questions?”
  • Then, summarize the value that you are offering the prospect and quote the prices
    • When you quote a price, you will want first to summarize what the prospect will receive for that money to remind him or her of the value of that purchase.”
      • “For your [summary of features to be included], the price is …”
      • For example: “For your hot air balloon ride of one hour for four people, the price is $200.”
    • Avoid the word “cost.”


Act of Commitment

  • This step involves closing and asking for the order
  • Surveys show that 62% of the time, just when the salesperson should be closing the sale, he or she never asks for the order.”
  • First close
    • “If we [summary of action to be taken], can you think of any reason why we shouldn’t [summary of desired act of commitment].”
    • The question is a negative because psychologically, it is easier for most people to say no than yes.
      • In this case, when they say no, it means they have just bought
  • After first close
    • No matter what objection a prospect raises, respond with one of the following statements that acknowledges the objection:
      • “I see.”
      • “I understand.”
      • “I can appreciate that.”
    • And then, address the objection clearly and directly
  • Second close
    • Acknowledge the objection
    • Re-establish your areas of agreement
    • Add a new feature / benefit point
    • Ask for the order again
  • Third close
    • Uncover and address the real objection
      • “There must be something you don’t like. Would you mind telling me what it is?”
    • Ask for the order again
  • Fourth close
    • Cite the penalty for not buying or acting now
    • Ask for the order again
  • Fifth close
    • Try
      • Compromise
      • Discount
      • Free trial
      • Adding humor
  • [Editor’s Comment: In this case, Roy Chitwood may have got it wrong. Five closes may be too aggressive and repetitive in most situations. With so many closes, the salesperson is not listening to the prospect who is likely saying – “I need more time.” It is likely better to do one close; then find out the true objection; then do a second close. If that does not work, then get some other act of commitment that advances the objective forward. And be done with this call.]


Cement the Sale

  • Good salespeople do not sell their customers and forget them
    • It is critical to ensure that the sale “wears well” and the customer is satisfied
  • This is crucial to help your customer avoid buyer’s remorse
    • Review the logical reasons for the purchase (the logical reasons make the sale wear well).
    • Express your thanks for the order
    • Promise to provide any required follow up action
    • Do the required follow up action
  • “The salesperson who continues to serve deserves.”



Mastering Track Selling

  • In learning and trying to master track selling (as with any new skill), use role playing and practice in a safe environment before doing in front of the customer.



About David Shedd

David has been a President - CEO - COO of an up to $350M group of manufacturing, distribution, specialty retail and services companies, having led 22 different businesses from turnarounds to start-ups to fast growth companies.
This entry was posted in Growth and Strategy, Perform / Execution, Sales and Marketing and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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