Okay, today I’m showing my age since most of you will not have a clue about this guy “Columbo” anymore than you would about “Perry Mason.” Yet, the technique works like a charm and will get results – either new information or a close – with the worst case of keeping the sales process moving forward.
So, who is this Columbo character?
A couple of decades ago there was a weekly detective drama starring Peter Falk as Columbo. This guy was a character. Smoked cigars, drove a Metropolitan automobile (now I’ve really aged myself!), had a huge and lazy Beagle for a pet and yet, he solved crime after crime as a great detective would. He wasn’t flashy, he was just very good at solving crimes. (Much like the Sales Superstars just get more b2b sales results.)
The Columbo Technique came from his method of appearing to leave the number one prospect (crime rather than customer.) when the bad guy was not responding to questions or was becoming difficult. So Columbo would pack up and actually leave the room on several occasions, just to return to the bad guy – mention he had only one more question and it was probably meaningless, yet, duty called for asking the question.