The Margin of Error

The margin of
error in the jewelry business can be minuscule at best. In sports, the margin of
error, or the difference between winning and losing, sometimes comes down to a
matter of inches or fractions of a second. In business, the difference between
profit and loss could be fractions of a single percentage point. In every
profession there is a distinct line between a win or lose situation, that we
don’t want to cross.

In many professions the job is either done right or it is done wrong. There is
absolutely no margin for error. The automobile mechanic either fixes the
problem or the car doesn’t run right. The pilot either has a safe take-off and
landing or he/she doesn’t. The doctor makes the proper diagnosis or he/she

The same
holds true in sales. Either you make the sale or you don’t. If you don’t make
the sale somebody else will. What is the margin of error in a sales
presentation? The difference between winning and losing the customer could boil
down to a single word or phrase. A sale could be made or lost because a single
question was or was not asked. The difference could be what you did or did not
say. The difference could be what you did and did not hear. Success in sales
comes with your ability to listen and communicate a message to satisfy a
customer’s need. It is just that simple. If you miss something the customer
said, or you don’t address an issue of importance to the customer, you may lose
the sale.

Look at every
selling opportunity and ask yourself: What did I do right? What did I do wrong?
In today’s environment it may just be a matter of a question, a phrase, or a
minuscule word, that creates a margin of error, a win or loss. Every lost
customer, or lost sale could make all the difference in the bottom line success
or failure of you and your company. It is time to sweat the small stuff and
make a difference.

Author, trainer, consultant, and speaker Brad Huisken is
president of IAS Training. He publishes a free weekly newsletter called “Sales
Insight” For a free subscription or more information on training, contact IAS
Training at 800-248-7703,,
fax 303-936-9581, or visit the website at