sales and smokingAccording to the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) only 20.6% of American adults smoke. Which means if you smoke, you’re potentially offending nearly 80% of your prospects.

And don’t think breath mints will solve the problem, either. The stench emanates from your lungs, so mints and gum just make your breath smell like a menthol cigarette. Further, smoke gets in your hair, your clothes, your car and your office, so everything stinks. You may not notice it, but your prospects certainly do.

Personally, I won’t deal with a salesperson who smokes. I can’t stand the smell of tobacco, so I won’t buy from people who reek of it. And a lot of people I know feel the same way.

So if you smoke—or your salespeople do—you can bet you’re losing sales to someone who doesn’t.