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  • Sell When You See the Whites of Their Eyes!
    Sell When You See the Whites of Their Eyes!
    by Steve A Klein
Sell When You See The Whites Of Their Eyes!
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Steve A Klein, author of “Sell When You See the Whites of Their Eyes!” and CEO of the Professional Development Center, has developed a wide range of sales and personal development training. His training focuses on such key issues as relationship leadership, attitudes, team building, sales management, sales negotiation, tracking and prospecting, customer service, self (time)-management, communication skills, and cultural and behavior change.

Sell When You See The Whites of Their Eyes!


“It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.” - Charles Darwin

The Salesman’s Fable

And in those days, behold, there came through the gates of the city a salesman from afar, and it came to pass that he sold plenty.

And in that city were they that were order takers and they that spent their days in adding to the alibi sheets. Mightily were they astonished. They said one to the other, “How doth he getteth away with it?” And it came to pass that many were gathered in the back office, and a soothsayer came among them. And he was one wise guy. And they spoke and questioned him saying, “How is it that this stranger accomplisheth the impossible?” 

Whereupon the soothsayer made answer, “He of whom you speak is one hustler. He ariseth in the morning and goeth forth full of pep. He complaineth not neither doth he know despair. He is arrayed in purple and fine linen, while ye go forth with pants unpressed.

“While ye gather here and say one to the other, ‘Verily this is a terrible day to work,’ he is already abroad. And when the eleventh hour cometh, he needeth no alibi. He knoweth his line and they that would stave him off, they give him orders. Men they say unto him ‘nay’ when he cometh in, yet when he goeth forth he hath their names on the line that is dotted.

‘He taketh with him the two angels’ ‘inspiration’ and ‘perspiration’ and worketh to beat hell. Verily I say unto you, go and do likewise.” - Author Unknown

Are you that salesman? Are you able to develop large numbers of clients who continually buy from you because you can “see the whites of their eyes?”

A colleague of mine, Mike Postlewait, owns Management By Strengths, a training company in Olathe, Kansas, that teaches individuals how to understand temperaments. His philosophy is that the better you understand yourself and others, the better you can work with and sell to others.

Within that training, Mike uses the following example about being out of control:

“You are standing in an alley, and a guy is walking toward you. Immediately, you realize this guy is not friendly because he is throwing rocks at you as he walks toward you. You look for a way out of the alley and see there is no way out, but you notice a garbage can lid (the shield) and start deflecting the rocks.”

Mike continues, “It’s the same with our psyche - if something goes against your temperament, you become defensive and raise that shield, then it is difficult to receive what is being said.”

Hence the title of this book, Sell When You See the Whites of Their Eyes! The only way to sell, the only way to develop a relationship with your prospect, and the only way to develop referrals and repeat business is for you to get your prospect to pull down that “garbage can lid” (the shield) and get to understand your prospect.

What does seeing the “whites of their eyes” mean? I can only get close to you (psychologically) and possibly intimate with you (meaning you’ve opened up to me) if I can see your eyes. This is the ability to communicate with and get inside the mind of the other person. If I were to stand about ten feet away from you and attempt to conduct a conversation, I wouldn’t be able to effectively communicate, since I wouldn’t be able to watch your expressions and facial movements. I would be too far away.

But you won’t let me get that close if you don’t trust me or feel that I care about you. When I’ve proven to you that I do care and that you can trust me, you begin to have confidence in me and let me get close enough to see the “whites of your eyes!”

The “garbage can lid” Mike refers to is the shield your prospect puts up until you get close enough to them that they pull it down. You can’t pull the shield down yourself, only your prospect will pull it down, based on how you interact with them. Your prospect puts the “garbage can lid” down when they feel that you care about them. And they feel you care about them when you begin to help solve their problems, not yours.

“Garbage can lids” or shields, can be anything your prospect or client uses as a way to keep you at a distance. People have developed an innate distrust of anything new, especially if they are the ones who say “yes” first. They use these shields to keep you at bay. Their thinking is “if you can’t get close to me, I won’t have to make a decision to buy right now.”

“Garbage can lids” may be verbal and may include statements like these:

“I only have a few minutes.”
“I never buy anything right away.”
“I have to talk to my partner (spouse, associate) first.”
“Just looking (retail).”
“I need more information.”

Do statements like these indicate that your prospect won’t buy from you? Absolutely not! Your job is to get close enough to your prospect for them to pull these “shields” down and turn this individual into a loyal and repeat client.

Sell When You See the White of Their Eyes! will show you how to help your prospect pull their “lids” down by helping you to understand yourself. You can’t change others. You can only change yourself; and by changing your approach to your prospects, your prospect will change toward you, pull down that “lid” and become your client.

Sell When You See the Whites of Their Eyes! is broken into four sections. Section one will show you what attitudes to develop to begin the change process. Section two will help you develop methods to track and organize your sales activity.

The third section is the heart of this book. Here, you’ll begin to understand the sales process and make it work to your advantage by showing you how to help your prospect pull their shield down.

And finally, section four will help you develop additional attitudes and behaviors necessary to make the changes you’ve planned.

You’ll notice that two references are used throughout this book. These terms are “prospect” and “client.” If you haven’t yet sold someone or some entity, they remain a “prospect” until sold. Even after the sale, the “client” may again be a “prospect” because they once again can be sold.

Once your “prospect” buys, he or she becomes a “client” rather than a “customer.” The term “customer” connotes someone who may or may not buy again from you. The attitude throughout this book is to make your new “client” someone who continually wants what you’re selling. Therefore, “client” is used as a term to better describe the relationship you develop by applying the ideas and actions suggested throughout this book.

You’ll also see the following “ACTION Steps” designed to help guide you through the steps to develop your sales plan. The format of this book is designed to let you write your thoughts and ideas in such a way as to develop this success plan to achieve your results and acquire more clients. 

Schedule time each day to work on one or two “ACTION Steps” throughout this book. Your maximum benefit will come from a minimum of thirty minutes. It’s always better to spread your time over the course of a week. It’s much like exercise. The true benefit comes from a daily regimen rather than being a weekend warrior.

Use this book as a workbook. When you find something that is important to you, underline, highlight or use a notebook to take notes. This information will then be readily available for your review. Time invested in reviewing what you’d like to learn and change pays dividends. Follow through on each action step. By the time you arrive at the end, you’ll have a well-formulated plan to achieve the results you’ll begin to establish in the first section.

You may also want to get a notebook or pad of paper and graph paper. Many “ACTION Steps” instruct you to put a large amount of information on paper. Rather than take up space in this book, you can begin to develop your own plan in your own book.

By developing these “ACTION Steps,” you’ll be thinking outside of your normal mindset, so you can look at another way to operate your business. You may not agree with some of the ideas and suggestions, but you’ll be comparing your way against another. 

To achieve success, the kind of success you really would like to have takes courage! Before you can achieve this kind of success, you need to earn the right to have your success. By developing the “ACTION Steps” throughout this book and putting them into action, you’ll begin to take the steps necessary to earn this right and earn the success you deserve.

How many ways are there to sell? As many ways as there are salespeople. You’re only limited by your own imagination. Use your imagination as you read this book and when you write down your thoughts in the “ACTION Steps.” The only thing that might change is your sales success!

“The money you make in any line of endeavor is determined 12 1/2% by knowledge and 87½% by your ability to deal with people.” - Stanford University Institute