Attack of the time-wasters

Oh, such seductive creatures they are! With eyes wide and wallets open, these people make you feel like the sun is shining a little brighter today. But dont be fooled by their allure, “time-wasters” are dangerous. Their impact on your business is costly and must be eradicated immediately.

Make no mistake, time-wasters are the enemy! Forget about your competitors for a moment, they’re the least of your concerns. Particularly, when your salespeople are chasing tails or failing to spend their valuable time as effectively as possible. Your business is being eaten alive at both ends. No business can sustain this form on delinquency for an extended period.

Every salesperson is forced to deal with time-wasters on a regular basis, if not daily. So why is this type of customer still so damn confusing and alluring to most sales professionals?

Immature salespeople rarely posses the required skills and confidence to successfully deal with time-wasters. They’ll often subscribe to a standard sales process, or no process, that applies to all, rather than focusing and adapting their approach towards the right customers.

More experienced sales professionals can fall victim to their own egos. Believing in their own hype and overestimating their ability to sell anything to anyone — they broaden their focus, look for short cuts and get lazy.

Others are simply desperate. They live in hope, ignoring their intuition to pour their finite and precious time into a vacuum. It’s all nasty stuff really. Costing large and small business big time! Casting a dark shadow over the guilty sales model or forcing it to move backwards.

To overcome time-wasters, you need to get deadly serious about educating and training the right sales people to work by and adapt a tested and targeted sales process. They also must learn to be confident and conformable saying the word “No!”

  • “No” to customers that are not defined as enablers, critical influencers or decision makers!
  • “No” to companies or people that are way outside your target market!
  • “No” to customers that take you beyond the parameters of what you know works!
  • “No” to demanding, self righteous and unprofitable customers!
  • “No” to salespeople who give managers endless excuses for underperformance!
  • “No” to sales managers that won’t get their hands dirty, when it’s required!

“No” is such a powerful word when you apply it to time-wasters with purpose. The best defence is attack. Get on the front foot by mapping your stakeholders, and also being crystal clear on what customers you can successfully contribute to the most.

The rest can go to your competitors or spend their time filling someone else’s vacuum.

Trent Leyshan is the founder and CEO of BOOM Sales! a leading sales training and sales development specialist. He is also the creator of The NAKED Salesman, BOOMOLOGY! RetroService, and the Empathy Selling Process.


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