A Sales Lesson I Learned From My 15-Year Old Daughter!

I started training sales people years ago, speaking and writing in hopes of others being able to learn something from me. Not that I am any smarter or better than anyone else, but simply because I happened to enjoy the process of training and teaching—and I didn’t mind getting up in front of others and talking about sales.

Through the years I’ve told salespeople:

Well, I learned something last week—from my 15-year old daughter.

We were buying my wife a new car (shout out to Sterling Automotive in Lafayette, LA—Very professional team and the Sales Manager even had a Grant Cardone “No Negativity” bracelet—so I was immediately impressed). Anyway, my wife had narrowed her decision down to two choices: A Toyota Camry XLE or a Hyundai Genesis. It just so happened that the local Auto Dealers’ Association was having one of their “off site” sales with 8 or so dealers all set up at the local college football field. It makes it very easy to walk from one dealer to another and compare vehicles. It’s basically a temporary Auto Mall.

We knew the Genesis was going to be a more expensive car than the Camry and I explained as much to both salespeople. I let them both know what we were comparing and both did a very good job of demonstrating the features and benefits of their respective cars. We looked at the Toyota first.

I told the salesperson that I was in sales, had worked with auto salespeople many times and this was going to be a “one pencil” deal. Give me your best price (we didn’t have a trade) and we’ll compare those numbers to the other vehicle and make our decision. And, he did.

Then we drove the Genesis. My wife loved it. However, she knew it was going to be significantly higher than the Camry and was prepared for it. Again, I told the sales representative that I didn’t want to play “Let me go talk to my manager” (it had been raining and it was almost 9:30 at night). The dealer himself came over, sat down and basically made us an offer we couldn’t refuse.

Car buying was over. We were about to be the proud owner of the Genesis. My wife was happy, I was happy and our 15-year old was thrilled. She really wanted that one, too.

While I was doing the paperwork, she grabbed my wife and said, “Come with me a second.”

They were gone for 10 or 15 minutes and I was waiting on some information from my wife when they returned.

“Where’d you go I asked?”

And here’s where I learned something.

My 15-year old daughter said, “I went back over to the Toyota place to tell that man we weren’t going to buy his car. I didn’t want him to wait on us—he was so nice.”

I really didn’t know what to say other than to ask his response.

“He shook my hand and said, ‘I respect that.’”

Now, you and I both know that salesman wasn’t waiting on me to be a “be-back”. But, to my daughter it was the right thing to do to let him know we’d chosen another car.

So, what did I learn? I learned compassion, I learned to take time to let those that have given me their time the courtesy of an answer, whatever it may be.  But, most of all I learned that I’m raising one very impressive young lady.