These days it’s difficult to find someone who will admit to being a sales person and be proud of it. Instead we get an amazing array of euphemisms: business development, marketing consultant, client development representative, client relationship manager, account manager, client success manager, and sales achievement specialists. OK , there are few I wish were not descriptors: hustler, dealer, pusher and peddler. I would like to think these descriptors are the exception rather than the rule.
I raise this situation for consideration as I began my career by participating in a two-year sales cadetship where it was very clear that only if I made it through would I then be appointed a territory sales representative. Those years were two of the best years of my life – they were formative years because I learnt a great deal.
First and foremost I learned that sales are the lifeblood of every business; without sales there is no business. So if you think you are one of those people who believes they can’t sell or don’t want to acknowledge what you do, Robert Kiyosaki of ‘Rich Dad, Poor Dad’ fame summed it up best for me, “you are either selling your stuff or buying someone else’s, that’s life. ” The reality is that everyone in your business, whether they want to acknowledge it not, is in some way a sales person.
The second thing I realised is the importance of people and that no two people are the same, and that understanding what makes people tick lies at the heart of a great sales person. This realisation sent me on a journey that continues to this day which was to understand myself because the more I understood myself the better I was able to understand others. From this understanding you build self-belief, trust, and integrity through the relationships you build.
The third thing I learned is sales can be learned. I have observed over the years that the best sales people are long term thinkers and invest in their own development. Investing in my development has enhanced a multiple of skills including a range of communication skills: listening, the art of conversation, the value of measurement as a motivator, time planning, the importance of systems, and the value of building meaningful networks.
It’s challenging for salespeople to take the profession they are involved in seriously if they are afraid of the sales title that goes along with it. There isn’t a profession that does not have its detractors and a few bad apples.
Think for a moment about the subtle messages it sends to your prospective client when you use a pseudonym to cover the real purpose of your role, which is to sell.
Viventé Australia enables leaders and managers develop the bond between people and performance, creating a powerful advantage: the synergy between people, leadership, management, and culture, produces performance that allows your business to achieve its best.