All too many salespeople believe selling is all about maneuvering a prospect into purchasing a product or service, never mind whether that product or service is in the best interest of the prospect. It’s a job, a way of making a living; in other words, the prospect is there to fulfill the salesperson’s needs, not the other way around. Practically every agony these amateur salespeople experience (and a good many of them are in agony; I’m talking to them every day) can be traced back to this erroneous, half-assed attitude.
Professional salespeople understand that selling is not about the salesperson or the products/services she is offering. It’s about the prospect/customer; about solving the prospect’s/customer’s problems, fulfilling their needs, being a partner to them to help make their world a better, more successful place. A true professional knows her success is in direct proportion to her ability to help others get what they want. That’s what her goal is: help others get what they want, help them get what is in their best interest.
So let me suggest you take stock of your attitude regarding what selling is or isn’t, because more than likely if you’re not happy with your work, if you’re fearful of making those cold calls, fearful of dealing with all those prospects/customers, settling for a third of the presentations you should be giving, blaming every external imaginable for your lack of success, it’s because you don’t get it—you’re looking at the selling process through shaded lenses instead of the clear ones you need to turn your selling world around.
Do you want to remain an amateur or do you want to become a professional? An amateur goes out on a presentation and dives right in, telling the prospect/customer all about her wonderful wares—its history, what it’ll accomplish, on and on without pause. The professional does extensive research before going out on the presentation, and then, before saying word one about her products/services, asks a series of pertinent questions, in effect interviewing the prospect/customer, to ascertain the information necessary to accomplish the goals spelled out in paragraph two above.
To really understand what we’re talking about here, ask yourself how you like to be sold (or how you like to buy?), what kind of salespeople do you like to deal with? Would you buy from you, or would you run like hell from yourself? Do you believe in the Golden Rule? More importantly, do you believe in Dr. Tony Alessandra’s Platinum Rule?—“Treat others the way they want to be treated”? All the answers to solving your selling agonies begin here, I promise you.
As is always the case, your attitude is the starting point for finding the answers to your most pressing difficulties. Take a hard look at yourself; what do you see?
About the Author:
Robert Terson has been a sales professional and entrepreneur his entire adult life. He retired from his advertising company in 2010 after 38 years in business. Today, Bob writes, speaks and generously shares his time with others. Bob also does some LIMITED coaching and training. He lives in suburban Chicago with his wonderful wife Nicki. He blogs regularly at SellingFearlessly.com and you can follow Bob on twitter @RobertTerson and LinkedIn. His book "Selling Fearlessly", released in October 2012, has received rave reviews and is available at Amazon.com.