Alec Baldwin from the cult movie, “Glengarry Glen Ross.”



In my early career I did print and online advertising sales for the banking and finance industry. To meet my short-term sales targets I kept myself busy on the phone and at meetings.

I needed to create artificial deadlines for customers signed regularly.

The pressure to produce weekly sales nearly turned me off a sales career.

Here are some tactics I used to shorten to help close deals:

  • If I had a prospect in another city, after verbally confirming when they would sign the order, I would book the plane flight to pick up the contract personally. It helped the customer to keep their word and gave me a tangible timeline to close.
  • I would use the boss as the bad guy, such as: “My boss needs me to finalise one additional order. If you can sign by Friday we can give you a 10% discount. How would that work for you?”
  • Creating scarcity can help you close more regularly. When I sold advertising on a print directory, there was one large customer (Client A) that always had first rights to a prominent section each year. Throughout the year when other potential advertisers were reviewing their plans I would see if they were interested in Client A’s position. Having 2 or 3 interested parties in Client A’s advertising space would help Client A to not procrastinate. It would also put pressure on the prospects to pick something before all the best positions were taken.

Having a regular sales deadlines is never any fun. However the pressure should help a start-up CEO to be more creative at delivering results.