Skip to main content
Top Tier Training & Development Inc. | Seattle, WA

This website uses cookies to offer you a better browsing experience.
You can learn more by clicking here.

Get The Sandler Rules for Sales Leaders in our online shop or purchase your Kindle version on Amazon. It is the definitive resource for effective sales leadership, based on the proven principles of the Sandler Selling System.

Rule #7: Avoid the Drama Triangle - Don't play games.

You know drama is one of those things that bring TV ratings. Everybody loves drama. Everybody loves to watch reality TV these days cause it's a freight train about to happen but we can't turn it off. People are attracted to drama. Just the natural way it is. But you don't want drama at your workplace. Drama is poison.

So what we do in our personal life, which is drama filled, we need to make sure that our professional life is drama free. How do you do that?

Well, the first thing is to understand something called the Drama Triangle because if you know what's happening, then you can either stay out of the drama and you can fix the drama.

Let me explain the drama triangle to you quickly. There are three positions on the triangle. You have a Persecutor, a Victim, and a Rescuer. Okay. The rules are only one person gets each role. You can't have two people being a Persecutor. So, one will be a Persecutor, one would be a Victim, one would be a Rescuer. They move quickly. It's like roulette. It flips around. If you have three people, all three people are playing the game.

Here's how it works. The salesperson asks you to go on a call for them. They couldn't do it. Their personal life is a mess. They're overbooked. They want you to go on a call. And by the way, this call will put them over their sales contest number. You as a sales leader says, "Sure, I'll do it. Do you have any information?" They give you a folder. You go on the call. Salesperson expected it to close. And by the way, you rescued, right? You said yes. You're the Rescuer in the triangle. You go on the call, and it didn't close. As a matter of fact, it's not going to close.

So, what happens? The salesperson who asked you to go on that call who thinks it's going to close is now the Victim. They're the Victim. Woe is me. That was closable. It was on the tee. What happened? Well, here comes the game. So, you go from Rescuer to Persecutor. What? That wasn't set up on the tee. You had no shot at that. Why don't you get your personal life in order, and therefore, I wouldn't have to rescue you? Matter of fact, you should go back through training because what you thought that deal was looked nothing like that. Uh oh. Here we go.

Now the Persecutor. I've moved from Rescuer to Persecutor. They're over here at Victim. Now how are they going to get out of Victim? They're going to move me out of Persecutor. Well, then it starts. And now I'm over here at Victim. It just continues. It happens in our personal lives, and it happens in our professional lives.

The bottom line is, the drama will never go away, but drama has no room at the workplace. Your job as a sales leader is to identify the drama and stop it. Good luck.

THE SANDLER RULES FOR SALES LEADERS details a sales management process that works. It offers 49 timeless, proven principles for effective sales leadership, based on the Sandler Selling System. The book is the sequel to the Wall Street Journal bestseller THE SANDLER RULES, also authored by David Mattson.

Interested in Sandler Training? Contact us today.


Share this article: