Sales situations in which only one-half of a couple is present are called ‘one-leggers.’ I don’t have the same problems with one-leggers that other technicians and salespeople do.  It’s not because of my super powers or superior sales skills. It’s because of the way I was raised. As far as I know, my mother made all the business decisions and handled every single thing regarding home maintenance, finances, and pretty much the entire family.

When making purchase decisions, the only time she said she must to talk to her husband about it was when she had no intention of buying. So, to me, it’s only natural that the woman of the house handle the affairs of the household.

Your Attitude

Many aspects of salesmanship are affected by our own attitudes and mindsets. One-leggers are no exception. If you’re the type of person who says, “If my wife spent any money without asking me, I’d kill her,” you probably can’t sell the woman alone.

One-leggers have the objection of “I have to talk this over with my husband/wife/or some other higher authority” built in, but they can still be closed, as long as they want what you’re selling.

Sometimes they say they can’t make the decision alone, and that the other party cannot be reached. If it’s a really important decision, and one-half of a married couple was unable to make it alone, wouldn’t you think that, in most cases, the other party would find a way to be available, at least by telephone or text message?

When you don’t close it on that visit, it’s rare that you ever hear from them again. In cases like that, it’s obvious that the decision actually was made by the party you talked to. You were not recommended for the job and they bought from someone else.

The True Objection

The trick to overcoming this objection, and really any objection, is getting to the true objection. Does the customer really have to talk to someone else, or is it just a smoke-screen they’re using to put off making a decision or hide the true objection because they feel like giving you a flat “no” is confrontational?

When you get the “I have to talk it over with …” objection, the first thing to do is find out how the person you are speaking to feels about your offer. Ask, “How do you feel about it?” Here’s another: “Okay. What are you going to tell him/her?”

The key is to try to learn how this person, who supposedly does not have decision-making authority, feels about your proposal.