The #1 Biggest Mistake you can make on a Discovery Call

Today I bombed a discovery call with a Sales Leader. 

When we wrapped up the call, he said my Sales Coaching program was not a good fit. 

So what exactly did I do wrong? 

He shared a major problem (only 3 of 12 reps hit quota last year), and I jumped RIGHT into the solution. 

Rather than DIGGING DEEP and asking him why his team missed quota, where they struggled most, and what specific areas he felt they needed training on,  I immediately started talking about how my coaching program could help them. 

I showed off a demo of the new coaching platform (which I’m very proud of), talked about my own background and skills, and made it about ME AND MY COMPANY rather than about him and his team. 

I’ve seen MANY founders make this mistake because they are SO PROUD of what they built, and it’s the WORST approach you can take with clients.

Show up and throw up! 

This is the SINGLE BIGGEST MISTAKE you can make in discovery meetings. 

Telling is NOT selling!!!

There’s a time and a place for everything, and the discovery call is NOT the time to talk all about yourself or your company. 

Prospects care much more about solving their own problems than hearing about your solutions, so give them a chance to talk and actively listen. 


It’s called discovery for a reason, and the bulk of the meeting should be spent understanding the problem clients face, why it exists, the pain it’s causing, and determining if you can help. 

You have no right to show off your solution or pitch a product or service until you KNOW that you can help them based on their specific needs, challenges, and pain points. 

When you go to the doctor, she doesn’t prescribe medication until she’s fully confident that it will resolve the issue. 

The same goes for discovery meetings. 

NEVER discuss your solution or recommendation until you are 100% confident that you can help the client. 

Spend the bulk of a 30 minute first meeting on discovery, actively listen, and if it’s a good fit, provide a high level overview of your solution at the VERY END of the meeting. 

Then book a separate meeting to give a demo, proposal, or whatever next steps are appropriate depending on what you sell. 

And never use a pitch deck or show a demo on the first meeting – it doesn’t work nearly as well as simply having a conversation. 

Ditch the pitch! 

I failed to follow my own sales process and it bit me in the butt. 

But I’m glad I failed, because it led to me making this video and now hopefully you won’t make the same mistake.


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