If you love old school manipulative selling techniques (you know the ones, those that have given salespeople a reputation on par with thieves, ambulance chasers, and snakes), you'll love The One Minute Closer: Time-Tested, No-Fail Strategies for Clinching Every Sale (Business Plus: 2008), by James W Pickens and Joseph L Matheny.
Seldom do I post a review of a book that I don't find to be at least somewhat helpful, but The One Minute Closer is so bad, so destructive to the selling profession, and such a waste of money, that I believe I would be doing a disservice not letting readers know why they should avoid wasting their money and their time on this dreadful piece of trash.
According to the authors, The One Minute Closer is designed to relate the wisdom of over 50 'master closers' from around the world that will teach salespeople the closing techniques that will turn them into master closers also.
In fact, what Pickens and Matheny have done is write a small book on how to be as unethical in sales as possible. This is a master course in deception, manipulation, lying, and impersonating sincerity. Despite the author's claims, it is doubtful that many of the supposed 'master closes' presented would do anything more than alienate prospects at best and get you thrown out on your ear at worse.
The One Minute Closer is chock-full of wisdom such as
- "when the master closer asks his customer to purchase, he will intentionally lower his head slightly and get a few degrees below the eye level of his customer. Then as the customer considers his response, the closer will slowly bring his head up, almost unnoticeably, so his eyes are on the same level as the customer's. Then, right at the exact second when the customer starts to make a sound, the closer will move his eye level up a few degrees above the customer's eye level. At that point, he will keep his head and eyes steady. This very slight head and eye movement is magic. What it does to the customer is surprising. The customer, completely unaware of what the closer is doing, will automatically raise his head and eyes to meet the closer's. This upward physical movement actually encourages the customer to give a positive response. This secret closing technique works, but the master closer has to be very subtle and deliberate in his movement. There can't be any sudden movement that might alert the customer."
- The "one dollar vs. one-hundred dollar close. In this close when your customer says they can't make a decision, take out a one dollar bill and a one-hundred dollar bill and ask which one the customer would like to have. Of course, they'll say the one-hundred dollar bill. You then say to your customer, "Mr Customer, don't ever tell me again that you can't make a decision, because you just did."
- The "what would Jesus do" close. You use this close when your customer "is a Sunday go to meeting" type (throughout the book this level of respect for customers is demonstrated). You acknowledge that you know he is a fine Christian and state that you understand that he wants to be like Jesus, just as every good Christian does. You then tell the customer that you'll give him your product or service free if he can show you anywhere in the Bible where Jesus said, "let me first ask my friend," or "let me first ask my accountant," or "I have to think about it." You point out that Jesus never had to hesitate to make a decision on his own. According to the authors, after delivering this close, "The customer is stunned. The master closer has made such a strong and truthful point, the customer doesn't know what to say."
The above is just a small taste of the book's BS.
This isn't to say, however, that the book doesn't have a small bit of useful information. It does. It's just that the majority of the useful information is so basic and so intuitively obvious that it would be classified as common knowledge, such as 'treat evey customer like a millionaire' and 'it's difficult to dislike people who like you.'
Whatever you do, save your money, don't buy this one.
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