When you think of a sales person, who do you think of? The product pusher, loading you down with the endless features, the order taker, perched in their fortress behind the cash register, or the over seller, talking through the close and not paying attention to your buying signals. Maybe you recognize some of these characters. The truth is, many of us have had negative experiences with bad salespeople and those negative experiences can create a lot of “head trash” for us when we are doing our own selling.
As always, in order to get the best results, let’s focus on what we want, not on what we don’t want. Today we give some thought to the true sales professional, the one who knows all about their product or service, and who even more importantly understands that selling is really all about helping people buy what they need simply and easily. They understand fully that the customer is interested in what’s in it for them, and that’s all they’re interested in.
What qualities identify great sales professionals? They have tremendous knowledge of their product or service, and they are able to communicate that knowledge effectively, at an emotional level. They have well-developed communication skills, because they devote much time to practicing those skills. They practice their scripts, techniques, body language, tonality, and yes their smile to leave their customers feeling genuinely important. They are always reading, increasing their knowledge and feeding their mind, and the really good ones have an almost innate ability to connect with other people.
There are reasons why most sales positions offer an opportunity to earn above average compensation. These reasons can often be lost in a sense of entitlement. A good sales professional knows that every day is game day – and if they want to keep their position on the team they have to bring their “A” game. Great sales professionals have learned how to hold themselves accountable – they follow their sales process and don’t make excuses.
How would you best describe your sales staff, and the level of their knowledge, skills, and training? Perhaps not quite at the level you want them to be at? Maybe you are the sales team, and that’s makes it more difficult to see things objectively. These days access to great training information is a click away on the internet. Better yet – are you providing access to training workshops and classes that can put you or your sales team in the company of other like minded professionals and really give them a competitive edge? How often do you “spar” with them, putting yourself in some role playing situations that push you and them out of your respective comfort zones, but almost always provide incredible insight and learning? What is your budget for sales training this year?