How to select and go after the right Sales opportunity?

I wanted to get your attention to an important topic that I observe frequently during the weekly Sales funnel discussions with my clients.

It is a big culprit that wastes the precious time of salespeople.

Hence I decided to write about it so that YOU can avoid making the same mistake.

It’s about Sales professionals going after Opportunities that aren’t well qualified. 

It hurts! 

Chasing the wrong deal not only hurts the salesperson’s chances of meeting his/her Sales quota. It also hurts the company at large – wasting team members’ efforts in doing presentations, burning the midnight oil in whipping up demos, beating tight deadlines in wiring POCs, writing compelling proposals – trying to push through the long sales process of a sales oppertunity that isn’t well qualified.

What does one do?

You need to establish one key aspect at the customer end if you want to hunt down a well-qualified sales opportunity.

That key aspect is called “the gap”.

Let me explain.

Note that the “perceptions of reality” are from the customer’s point of view.

Not yours.

Typically you can encounter one of the following four situations at the customer end.


I have attempted to illustrate the four situations pictorially so that you can relate to them and understand them easily.


The customer is clearly aspiring for growth. As you can see with your plain eyes that the customer HAS to take action to fill the divergent gaps before his company could reach the stated goals.

And that is where your company, products, and services come in.

The probability of the customer buying a product or a solution ( a sale) is obviously high.

  1. TROUBLE  

Here the customer is distinctly in trouble.

A combination of few factors or events, caused either internally or externally, are disrupting him and/or holding him back from reaching his goals & objectives.

Does your proposal eliminate the gaps? Can you craft a compelling value proposition?

The probability of the customer buying a product or a solution ( a sale) is high.


In this situation, the customer feels that he is “all set”! 

How many times have we heard that phrase before, to our utter disappointment, from many of our prospects?

Also, statements like:

“Our current vendor is doing a great job”! 

“Our systems are fine-tuned and they are working well!”

Very few chances of a Sale here; unless ……! (that is a topic for another post later)


Here is a customer who is super confident!

Or maybe, is myopic. Probably short-sighted?

In case he has read the situation wrongly, he hasn’t (yet) realized that there is an impending doom if he doesn’t take action.

And worse, he/she feels that if he/she ventures with your proposal it would actually disrupt and harm the company.

ZERO chance of a Sale. Nil. Nada.

What do you think? 

Do these 4 customer situations resonate with you? 

Now here is a weekend exercise for you, if you are willing to take some action and improve your chances of beating your quota this quarter:

  • Take 3 of your large, must-win opportunities, in your current sales funnel, and reflect on them to find out where they fit in. What are the signals you have picked up from the decision-maker or the influencers?
  • What additional data would you need for you to either qualify or disqualify these opportunities?
  • Who else do you need to call on, at the customer account, to establish these data points? What questions do you need to ask them?

Now, if there are any “gaps” in my note, please fill in with your valuable comments below. 🙂 Would appreciate you for that.

If you think someone in your network would benefit from this article, please hit the share button. Love you for that.

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