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“Try not!  Do or do not, there is no try.” – Yoda

How can such a small word create such a problem for you?  The word try depicts difficulty at the unconscious level.  The moment the word is thought or uttered, you have told either yourself or your prospect it will be difficult to do, if not impossible.  So, beware!

We as salespeople are not paid to try.  We are paid to do!  When you call on a prospect you either do or do not. There is no try.  The moment you think:

“I will try my best to sell them,” or

“I tried my best to sell them,”

at a deep psychological level you have in essence, shot yourself in the foot.  Trying has never generated one sale or created one success in life.  Maybe thinking we are trying is a way to make ourselves feel better for our lack of success or failures.

The problem with this word is that it restricts our thinking.  It shuts down our ability to actively problem solve and search for solutions to make something happen.  Trying makes us believe that somehow we did what we could and that’s okay. “I tried.”

Let me ask you a question.  When you ask someone to do something for you that day and they say, “I’ll try to do it.”  What goes through your mind?  That’s right.  It is not going to happen.  So, why do we expect and believe that when we tell ourselves we are going to try or are trying to do something that it is going to happen or get accomplished?  We already mentally gave ourselves an out.  “I tried!”

The mental shift needs to be away from “I’ll try to . . .” to:

 “I will . . . “

“How can I . . . ? “

“What do I need to do to . . . ?”

“What do I need to do differently to . . . ?”

Again, using the word try with your prospect during a sales call can undo all you work so hard for.

Will you try my product or service?”

When you ask the prospect to try your product or service, you have in essence told them your product or service will be difficult to use.  Even if the customer says they will try it, do they?  Or do they just tell you they did?

During my first year as a salesperson I worked for a major manufacturer, I went around asking my prospects to try my product thinking this will get my foot in the door and once they tried it, they will use it.  I felt really good when a prospect told me they would give it a try.  I soon learned the error of my ways.  After a few months, that’s exactly what I had!   Some prospects did try it, but many more were still going to try it.  But what did I really have in terms of actual usage?  That’s right, very limited results.

My focus changed.  I didn’t want them to try it anymore.  I wanted them to use it.  So, how can I convince them to use it?  This one fundamental shift in thinking changed the whole sales call and tripled sales.   I never uttered the word try again.

As a salesperson “Do or do not, there is no try.”


Sales Tip #14:  Delete the word try from your sales vocabulary.  You want the prospect to use your product or service.


Copyright 2012  J.P. Thompson CHt.  All rights reserved.

Visit Ascent Selling Technologies’ website:. www.ascenticg.com

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J.P. Thompson CHt


Clinical Hypnotherapist
NLP Practitioner
Master Sales Trainer (34yrs)

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