Take A Moment For Self-Reflection On Sales

Salesman_SmallYou either love it, hate it, or just do it because you're stuck. The mere mention of the word "sales" can cause whales to beach themselves. Yes, it's that bad. But, without sales there's nothing. No customers, or your next meal. When you meet one of those sales gurus, your first reaction is "I can never be like Jeff". Or, "he's been doing it for so long he's good at it". For most of us sales represents a continuous internal struggle. It's like saying "I don't like Oxygen (but I have no choice)".

We've perfected the "science of sales avoidance". When the time comes to sell, we check email one last time, remember that we don't like our filing system and rearrange everything, decide that we're hungry and grab a bite. You get the point. It is the business equivalent of split-personality. Our reptile brain tells us to run like hell and at the same time reminds us that we need to eat.

Can you dislike something so much but still succeedAbsolutely.

JUST BE YOURSELF.

Selling does not mean that you have to be someone you're not. It's about brain-reconditioning. Break the pattern. "When I say salesman, what words comes to mind"?  Emotions and imagery of everything we're not comfortable with. Unless you break the pattern, you're stuck with a never-ending internal struggle and discomfort.

  1. You must believe in what you're selling and the value it provides
  2. Define Sales as: Giving something of value and getting monetary value in return
  3. Identify your prospect's problem before you say anything.
  4. Have a conversation. Ask Questions. Then just LISTEN.

There you have it. The formula to take sales head-on and stop being miserable.

#1, in plain language means that if you hate what you're selling, get out. Say whatever you want about sales people, you can always tell when they are "faking it".

#2 is the key to success. Sales people solve problems, you just have to identify and isolate the problem, then match it with why your product or service provides a good solution = value.

#3 is the most essential part of the process. You can't sell snow to Eskimos.

#4 Yes, LISTEN. I mean "listen" to your client not to your internal voice that is going into "robo-sales" mode and lining up the "how to overcome objections" nonsense.

Take on the role of problem-solver and decide that your job is to help people. No one likes to be sold, just like you don't like to sell. But, all of us have problems and if you are sincere about presenting a solution that can help, you're not selling.

Speak to your prospects in plain language. Ditch the idiotic jargon that will only get your prospect to feel uneasy and reject you immediately. "I provide solutions for a well-balanced life". Seriously? What does that mean? Whose life is in balance? Not anyone I know.

The good news: We sell all day long. Some of us even sell at night when we're next to our significant other and try to convince him/her of something. Everyone is engaged in selling, we just don't call it sales because no money is exchanged.

So here's the problem, and the solutions: You are uncomfortable, miserable and frustrated because YOU SOLD YOURSELF on believing everything you heard about sales. (so, you can sell after all).

UNSELL yourself. Relax.Go have a plain conversation with someone and see if you can help solve a problem.  Be yourself not someone you think you need to imitate. And, never, ever start a conversation with "I'm not here to sell you something" - it's your "other-self" reminding you how much you hate this role. Break the pattern and go talk to someone.