We preach about it constantly in sales training sessions- listen twice as much as you talk. Easier said than done especially when we are paid to talk.
I personally have to reminded myself of this on a daily basis. When I am asked a question from a customer or prospect that starts off with "tell me what you do?" I will often just dive in and start to ramble on about my business. Like he cares.
What he is looking for in all of my rambling is a key word or two that sounds like what he is needing or looking for from me. It would have been so much easier if I would said "I would love to tell you about what we do, but first let me ask you just a couple of questions about why you called."
Today was such a day where my logic hat went into gear first, and I did exactly what I have preached to sales people over the last decade. Listen twice as much as you talk. Man, it sure is wonderful having a short, engaging, meaningful conversation with someone who knows what they want. Once I know that, I share information about what is important to them.
Selling is so much easier if we stop talking and actually ask and listen for what the customer or prospect is seeking.