Your Competition Wants Your Sale

By Mike Coday •  Updated: 10/21/23 •  6 min read

You think you have the sale…

The paperwork is signed and you’re feeling pretty good about yourself as you leave the house.

You stick the sign in the yard, turn and wave one more time, and celebrate with a few hidden fist pumps under the dash.

You’ve sent a group text out telling everybody important about your sale. By the time you turn the first corner, you’ve calculated your commission check down to the dime.

You know what bills you’ll pay and what you’ll keep for yourself… maybe a guys night out, some accessories for your truck, or maybe you’ll stick some away in savings…

Quick Summary

  1. False Security Post-Sale: Salespeople often celebrate prematurely after getting the paperwork signed, assuming the deal is done. However, this overlooks potential disruptions before the deal is fully sealed.
  2. Overlooking the Competition: The article highlights a critical mistake: forgetting about competitors who might swoop in and attempt to steal a deal even after paperwork is signed, emphasizing that a sale isn’t truly complete until the final payment is received.
  3. Ethics and Competition: The author expresses a strong personal disdain for competitors who try to snatch sales post-agreement, referring to them as unethical. However, he acknowledges that these competitors exist and are a real threat.
  4. The Incomplete Nature of a Sale: A signed contract is emphasized as merely a promise of service, not the conclusion of a sale. The deal is only truly closed once all payments have been made and cleared, and commissions have been received.
  5. Vulnerability of a Sale: The strength of a sales agreement is contingent on the salesperson’s ability to solidify the deal. The presence of other roofing companies actively seeking business creates a persistent risk to deals that may appear settled.
  6. Client Reliability and Risk Assessment: Experienced salespeople account for the unpredictability of clients and potential fall-throughs. They don’t count their earnings before the deal is fully finalized and are aware of the risks involved in each agreement.
  7. Financial Implications of Unfulfilled Sales: The article cautions that receiving an advance or a draw on a sale doesn’t equate to completed earnings. If a deal falls through, salespeople might find themselves repaying advances, which can be financially stressful.
  8. Inoculation Strategy: The author advocates for a strategy called “inoculation,” which involves spending extra time to ensure a deal is watertight. Rushing a deal or fearing to apply necessary pressure might leave room for competitors to intrude.
  9. Time Investment Equals Commitment: Investing more time with clients builds commitment, making them less susceptible to offers from competitors. This investment helps in safeguarding the deal against those looking to capitalize on weak agreements.
  10. Avoiding Complacency: The piece ends with an invitation for readers to discuss strategies for solidifying sales and a reminder to subscribe to a sales tips newsletter. The overarching message is to never get complacent after the initial agreement, as the deal isn’t done until it’s fully executed and paid.

One Major Problem


I’m not going to debate whether it is right or wrong for another sales person to come in behind a sale and try to steal it away after the paperwork has already been signed.

People have strong opinions about it either way…

Personally, I think they’re scum-sucking, bottom feeders that deserve to choke on their own karma, but that’s just me.

The fact remains, no sale is ever complete until the last check has been collected, cleared the bank, and you’ve been paid your commissions in full.

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At this point, the only thing you have is a piece of paper signed by your prospect promising they’ll use your services for the contracted amount.

That’s it!

You’ve got a piece a paper with some ink on it…

All You Have Is Ink

How strong your ink stands depends almost entirely on how well you sealed the deal before you left the home.

You have seen the other roofing trucks driving around town looking for business, right?

You have seen the other sales people walking up and down the street prospecting, right?

You do know they have friends, neighbors, and co-workers who are talking to them about their chosen roofing company… and why they chose them, right?

Sure, there’s a few other variables at play…

I don’t want to discount the fact that some clients are unreliable, but an experienced sales person already accounted for that chance. They’ve considered the risk of things falling apart before they signed the deal…

…before texting all their friends… before mentally paying their bills on a commission check they haven’t earned yet.

It’s Just a Draw

Even if you do get a check from the sale, it is only a draw against future commissions that you haven’t earned until your client has paid in full.

If that ink doesn’t do what you think it should, you’ll be stuck paying back your draw… that’s no fun.

No sale is ever complete until the last check has been collected, cleared the bank, and you’ve been paid your commissions in full.

What Can You Do?

Well, you might want to try using INOCULATION.

It is a pain in the butt to take the extra time to properly seal the deal. I know how tempting it can be to leave before zipping everything up.

You’re tired. You have another appointment. Maybe you feel like putting more pressure on your prospect might cause them to kick out (that should tell you something right there).

Another thing to remember is this… time = commitment.

The more time you spend with your client, the less likely they are to be open to that slimy, scum-sucker who can’t sell their own deals, but picks off weak deals made by weak sales people who sell to weak prospects.

If you’re selling weak deals, even one weak deal, you’re going to feel the pain sooner or later. You can get “lucky” for awhile, but sooner or later, you’ll get your deal picked off… probably about the time you’re really counting on cashing that commission check.

Do you have any questions about how to seal the deal? Maybe you have some comments about tactics you’ve used successfully to lock your ink in tight.

If you have something to say, please leave your comments below or contact me directly. I want to help you.


P.S. Have you subscribed to the all-new 101 Sales Tips Newsletter yet? Go ahead and do that now because I’ll be emailing out sales strategies, tips, and motivations to help you make more money.

Mike Coday

Mike started selling roofs in '95 while working as a youth pastor at a small church in North Texas. A decade later he transitioned to speaking at industry conferences and training outside sales teams. Today, he works exclusively as the premier consultant to roofing company owners who are driven for growth.