Only Applicable Knowledge Is Power

Written by Sean McPheat | Linkedin thumb

I believe someone once said that knowledge is power. I beg to differ however. It is really only applicable knowledge that is power.Knowledge is power

As a professional sales person, you can have all of the knowledge in the world. But unless you know how to apply that knowledge to help the buyer; it is useless. However, when you can use your knowledge to provide the right solution at the right time, it’s worth a mint! The following cute little story exemplifies what I mean.

We’ve Got A Problem
The islanders panicked as their main generator, the only source of all of the electric power on their island had stopped working. They immediately called in everyone on the island with knowledge of fixing generators.

The oldest and most reliable electrician on the island made the first attempt to fix the generator, but after four hours of work, he could not get the machine to start. He left his bill for £400. A second expert from the island went to work on the generator, also to no avail, leaving his bill for £320.

Desperate, the islanders finally called an expert from the mainland. They could never tolerate outsiders, but in this instance they had no choice.

The young man arrived by helicopter and proceeded straight to the generator. He studied it for a moment, and slowly walked around the machine. Then he got down on one knee, made a fist with his right hand and banged his knuckles on the generator with two loud knocks.

“Vavavarrooom!” Instantly the generator started right up! The man smiled, turned and got back on the helicopter and left. Later the islanders received his bill. It was for £20,002 plus airfare! Outraged, the island’s leader called the generator expert.

“What is this? Are you out of your mind?” The island leader demanded. “How could you possibly charge us £20,002 just for knocking on the machine twice?”

“No, no, no. You’ve got it all wrong.” The expert explained. “The knocks are only £2, that’s all. I charge just £1 per knock. The £20,000—–that’s for knowing WHERE to knock.”

Know Where To Knock
All of the product knowledge in the world is useless if you do not understand where and how it benefits the customer. You have to know how to apply such knowledge to solve the problems of your perspective clients. Do not sell knowledge, expertise, experience, history or even benefits. Sell solutions! Know WHERE to knock.

Happy Selling!


Sean McPheat

Sean McPheat
Managing Director

MTD Sales Training | Image courtesy of It’s Paige Again at

450 sales questions free report

Originally published: 1 November, 2012

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