Don’t Love Sales? You Can Still Be Effective.
You’re in sales. So, why do you hate it? Maybe it’s the label “sales.” Or you may not want to be pushy. Or you want to avoid being thought of as a “used car salesman/person (UCS).”
Society sketches an unflattering picture of sales professionals as loud, obnoxious and unethical. Plus, nearly everyone has encountered a seedy salesperson once or twice. The UCSs only care about commissions, not helping prospects.
As humans, we have a built-in need to sell. According to USC Marshal School of Business, professor Ira Kalb, everyone has to sell to succeed. We sell ourselves on dates, during job interviews, when we want to get promoted, to convince others to do what we want or to campaign for a certain assignment.
After all, you’re selling when you try to convince your companion to see the movie you want. If you don’t agree, you ask questions to find out what your silver screen buddy wants. This is “solving a problem.” Campaigning for your choice is called a “pitch.” If your friend doesn’t like RomComs, for instance, you discuss and “negotiate” which film to see.
In that scenario, you’re selling – whether you know it or not. You’ve solved a problem, made a pitch, listened to the other interested party, and negotiated final terms.
Maybe all you need is an attitude adjustment. Leigh Ashton, sales coach, and author, thinks that if you don’t like selling, you need to change the “sales” label. You’re solving problems, not selling products. You’re not pushing, you’re helping.
Does Pushy Work?
Be assertive, not aggressive. Don’t contact the same prospect over and over until their assistant tells you they’ve joined a monastery. Remember that if you’re selling what they truly need, you don’t have to badger or push anyone.
Introverts vs. Extroverts
Studies show little to no difference between introverts and extroverts in sales. The most successful actually fall in between. Studies show that — let’s call them “tweeners” make much more than either Introvert or extroverts.
Selling sugar-filled candy to diabetics isn’t the best use of your time. Target the population that needs your product or service.
According to Jennifer Faulkner, marketing manager for Proposify, instead of cold calls, try cold emails. Research your prospect first. Add information they may actually welcome and make sure your message is lively and animated (i.e.: not boring).
Build a Network
Everyone has strengths. Nurture a yin/yang relationship. Complement your qualities with a partner who has opposite traits.
Believe in What You Sell
Your enthusiasm and energy are better when you sell quality products. Selling products that actually help people make sales professionals happier at their jobs.
Listen more than you talk. Bounce back quickly when you get a rejection. Be yourself.
We all need salespeople. The business world won’t survive without sales professionals. Just remember, you’re solving, not selling.
|Tamera Shaw is a freelance writer for Insured Solutions based in Louisville, Kentucky. She writes fiction and enjoys amateur photography. She happily shares her life with husband Ron, daughter Cate and sage cat, Sophie, who grudgingly shares her home with the newest member of our family – Nieko, our new kitten.|