Four ingredients to sales success
There are four significant areas when it comes to consistent high sales performance. They are:
Self-image and self-esteemAll sales success is the result of a foundation grounded in right attitudes and positive self-esteem and/or self-image. If a salesperson has all of the skill competencies and yet lacks the right attitudes, sooner or later they will sabotage their results and performance due to a lack of self-control and discipline. An example is price resistance.
When a salesperson with low self-esteem gets price objections or resistance, their first reaction is to lower price due to a need for validation, approval or acceptance. A salesperson with high self-esteem will go back to selling value. Show me the salesperson who is consistently getting the highest margins and I’ll show you a salesperson with high self-esteem and vice versa. Self image is the result of a number of factors including, but not limited to, self-belief, self-trust, knowledge, wisdom, insight, self-understanding and a willingness to grow.
Self-discipline, attitude control and commitmentOne of the critical issues for continued sales success is the level of a person’s self-discipline and personal commitment to positive results. People who lack consistency in their performance tend to fall down in these two areas. Self-discipline is the willingness to do what is necessary, not what is comfortable, and to do it regardless of inside (the organization) or outside (the market place, economy or competitors) positive or negative influences or factors. Knowing what to do and how to do it is not enough for long-term sales success.
A person must know why they are doing what they are doing, and what inside factors may stand in their way - such as old baggage, expectations, personal agendas, fears and needs. Commitment is a function of life purpose, goals and a success strategy. Most people lack this clear vision for the rest of their life in both their career and life in general. They just show up, do what is required and move on. Real winners in life connect today’s performance with tomorrow’s lifestyle.
Goals and personal philosophy
A person’s goals drive their actions, attitudes, behaviours and ultimate life outcomes. People who lack a clear understanding of what they want, why they want it and how to get it, as well as the plans, methodology and willingness to move forward relentlessly regardless of setbacks and disappointments, are doomed to a life filled with frustration, high stress, anxiety and failure. There are many philosophies and approaches to the goal process. None are right or wrong. What matters is that the person uses one that works for them. It is a matter of asking oneself regularly: what am I doing (in my life, career, business, relationships, financially) that is working, what am I doing that isn’t working and what did I used to do that used to work that I have stopped doing? And, what am I going to do about it and when?
Goalsetting is more than just setting goals. It is using the goal process to achieve balance, success, lifestyle and personal satisfaction. Life philosophy is just that. It is what you believe in, feel passionate about and are willing to do regardless of whatever life throws in your path. It is like a personal mission statement. It drives your every decision, action and attitude.
Sales skillsSelling is the ability to influence and persuade - to communicate and relate the benefits and attributes of your product or service to your prospects and customers.
This area encompasses a whole host of skills such as:
- The ability and courage to ask the right questions
- Spending time with decision makers
- A strategy of managing your prospect and customer base effectively
- The ability and willingness to listen
- A methodology for disarming obstacles before they sabotage the sale
- The courage and ability to ask for the business
- Creating win-win customer relationships and loyalty
- There are lots more
When you put all of these together you will have a winning combination for sustained sales success. Yes, there are many more attributes and skills, but I'll bet most of them will fall somewhere within the definition of these four. How are you doing?
Reprinted with the permission of Tim Connor of Tim Connor, CSP, a globally renowned sales and management speaker and trainer for 36 years, and best- selling author of over 75 books including Soft Sell, the best-selling sales book in the world, now in 21 languages. [email protected] 704-895-1230 (US) www.TimConnor.com; www.CorporateDisconnect.com