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Keep Your Friends Close and Your Enemies Closer Part 2


Guest articles > Keep Your Friends Close and Your Enemies Closer Part 2


by: Daniel Milstein


In the beginning of my career as a salesperson, I observed many of my competitors. I avoided their missteps and applied their strengths to form my own successful sales model.

I have also experienced how competing salespeople or firms can cooperate for the benefit of their customers. For example, numerous lenders have referred me loans that they considered too difficult to handle. I would not hesitate to do the same if we were in a similar situation. In addition, loan originators at other firms often call me to ask for advice on marketing or related topics and I am always willing to share a few details about our non-proprietary programs.

Having a positive working relationship with competitors can pay unexpected dividends. Among the financial services firms Gold Star competed against for several years was a good size mortgage banker whose management style I highly respected. They were very professional and in many ways ran their business like we did. One day the branch manager of this nationwide firm called me to arrange a meeting. He came to my office and we shared a few stories before he got to the point. He was tired of managing a large group of salespeople and support staff during a very challenging market, although unlike some other mortgage bankers, he had been quite successful. He leaned forward and said simply, 'I want to get back to originating and think this would be a good fit.' He even offered to bring some of his top salespeople along. This former sales manager subsequently joined us and has been a top producer ever since. Such an arrangement likely would not have been possible if we had an adversarial relationship.

As a salesperson, you can learn a great deal from your competitors and even create a mutually beneficially relationship.


Daniel Milstein is the bestselling author of ABC of Sales. For more information, visit:

Contributor: Daniel Milstein

Published here on: 17-Mar-13

Classification: Sales


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