Leadership Lessons Learned: Take Meetings with Salespeople


Everyone loves to be sold to right? Okay, not so much.

Chances are you’re bombarded with people trying to sell you something. If you’re like me, you probably have gotten pretty good at ignoring most of them.

But one of the best things I do each month is force myself to take at least three meetings with salespeople. It probably sounds a little weird, especially when we’re all swamped, but I encourage you to give it a shot.

There are numerous benefits — I’ll share my top five.

5 Benefits of Talking with Salespeople

1. The obvious one – find products/services that add value to your company.
There are so many amazing products and services out there. It’s impossible to keep up with everything. Forcing yourself to take at least three meetings a month leads to finding products that will help your business.

2. Give yourself a mental break from your routine.
We all need a break from the daily grind. We often find ourselves in a rabbit hole and need to just step away. Taking meetings allows you to break up the week with something different. Then, almost magically, when you get back to the normal tasks you find solutions or ideas that had previously been eluding you.

It might be simply because you stepped away from whatever project you were working on. Other times, seeing a demo of a product and how they solve one issue makes you think of a way you could attack your project differently.

3. See how other people sell.
If you’re in sales (we all are to an extent), it’s always good to see firsthand how others are selling.

  • How effective is their messaging?
  • Are they taking a storytelling approach that you find interesting?
  • Is the presentation software they’re using something pretty cool that you haven’t seen before?
  • Are any of these things you or your team could use?

Even if you’re not technically in sales, there are benefits. I was talking to a prospect yesterday about VIP Crowd. She asked if she could record our call/demo. Sometimes people ask to do this so they can share it with someone on their team who couldn’t attend. But she had a different reason.

She informed me that she tries to record every sales call with SaaS companies no matter what the product is so she can share with her sales team. They want to see how others sell and see if they can learn something. I thought that was pretty cool.

4. Expand your network.
Some salespeople are annoying and frankly bad at their jobs… Not people I want to be connected with. Many others are brilliant. A good salesperson will take the time to truly understand your business and your pain points. From this, they may suggest other products you might want to check out or better yet, people they know that might be interested in your product. If nothing else, they are a good connection for the future.

There’s also a chance you have a connection who could be good fit for the salesperson’s product. If that’s the case, make the intro. Both sides will be appreciative and are likely to help you out when needed.

5. Learn something new.
As I said earlier, there are so many great products out there. I’m constantly amazed at the solutions companies come up with. Sometimes I even take meetings that I know are not a great fit for VIP Crowd. Maybe it will be a fit in the future or maybe I just want to learn something. I’m always open with the salesperson, and almost every time we still both get value out of it.

We all need to keep learning and keep challenging ourselves. One of the best ways to do that is to force yourself to take at least a few meetings each month.

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