5 Steps to Bounce Back After You Lose a Key Sales Account

5 Steps to Bounce Back After You Lose a Key Sales Account
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After You Lose a Key Sales Account, Do Not Give Up
You had it and then you lost it — that big client account that was going to make your sales quota for years to come.  For most sales people, it is always painful to lose a key sales account.

As a high performance solution seller, it is terrifying to lose a key sales account. You risk losing income, job security and reputation. Give yourself a bit of time to acknowledge the loss.  Then begin the rebuilding process.

5 Steps to Bounce Back After You Lose a Key Sales Account

  1. Never Burn Bridges
    Whatever the reason that caused you to lose a key sales account, be as gracious as you can as you take in the news. You certainly don’t want to offend your former customer. If they respect what you have done for them and the relationship you shared, they may well be a good client referral in the future.

    Sour grapes could spoil that.

  2. Try to Figure Out What Happened
    What responsibility should you take for losing a key account and what was due to circumstances beyond your control? You need to be objective. Try to re-frame the situation in a way that helps you look forward and understand what you can do differently next time.

    Similar to a project post mortem, list the facts and be sure to include the positive aspects of the relationship. You can learn something important from every success and misstep.

  3. Assess Your Unique Sales Talents
    Again, be as objective as possible as you assess what you bring to consultative selling that no one else can. What are your unique talents? The goal is to understand exactly what your clients appreciate about you so you can highlight the qualities that set you apart and make you hard to replace.
  4. Plan for Losing Key Sales Accounts
    You will lose key clients — everybody does at one point or another. But you can lessen your risk and vulnerability of losing a key client account by diversifying your customer base and working diligently on developing new business with target clients.
  5. Look Forward and Be Positive
    Look for the silver lining. Maybe that client did not really suit you and the way you like to work. Perhaps there was less real value in the relationship than you thought.

    You might now have time to develop an even better target client — one who is a better fit for you and your company. And don’t lose sight of the fact that if you were skilled enough to land a major sales account once, you can surely do it again.

The Bottom Line
When you have a better sense of your sales capabilities, you can be more discriminating in your choice of clients. Try not to take on accounts out of desperation but by being selective. You are not right for every client and every client is not right for you.

To learn more about how to not lose a key sales account and how to find, win, and keep more clients, download The 4 Steps to Ideal Target Client Definition to Accelerate Growth

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