Sales is the most important part of business. How can you build on this skill set?
Nothing matters without sales. You are not really in business if you aren’t selling something. Even politics and nonprofits all come down to great sales skills today. Not everyone has a lot of sales experience, and it is easy to get rusty fast. No matter whether you are looking for a new job, and looking for investments to negotiate, or are the CEO of a massive corporation or nonprofit organization, the better you are at selling, the better your numbers will be, and the longer you’ll have the privilege of doing what you love.
Check out these ten ways to grow, polish, and enhance your sales abilities…
One of the biggest problems is simply not asking for the business enough. Always ask for the business. You may not get another chance. You may not be comfortable with it yet, but you are going to hate it even more if you find out that person bought from your competitor the next day. Ask for the sale in all of your marketing, and whenever you meet people.
One of the best ways to learn effective sales calls is to invite them from others. Listen, test them, and learn. See what factors would make you want to buy, or lose the sale. Pick up the phone when telemarketers are calling, stop by a sales office, or invite reps into yours. You may be surprised at what you learn.
If you aren’t good at starting conversations with others, then wear something that will get them to start a conversation with you. Wear a bold suit, or start wearing a signature accessory, or over or under dress.
Listening can be a lot harder than it sounds. Yet, if you can stay quiet long enough, the other person will tell you all you need to know in order to make a successful sale. Sales can be 90% listening, and 10% or less talking yourself. It can take practice, but test yourself to see how well you can do.
Instead of going in with the mindset of how you can help yourself, your company, or your sales figures, go in with the goal of finding out how you can help the other person or company. If you provide a great fitting solution, the sale can be effortless.
Harvard Business Review recommends role playing with others to build your confidence and comfort with selling. Often it is just a matter of getting familiar with your script so that it flows naturally. Role playing in a test setting is the best way to do this so you don’t burn real opportunities.
Again, selling is very little about what you say, and more about what you do. Pick up a book on body language and learn how to read others, and present yourself in the best way in order to close the deal.
Have fun with it. Challenge yourself by setting new sales goals (and rewards for hitting them). Compete with your peers or your own sales team. Even pitch in and sell random stuff to enhance your overall sales ability, no matter what the product is.
Demonstrating sales to others is a great way to keep your skills fresh and honed. Teach your kids at the curbside lemonade stand or going door to door to get sponsorships for a school project. Hold a sales skills training session at your office, and role play or do live calls. Record your own sales calls to pass on as training for new recruits.
If winging it isn’t working then plan it out. Plan out your sales process and script. Take that to your business coach and have them provide feedback on it. Incorporate that and keep documenting your process and words so that you can systemize the best sales process for future team members.
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