Finding a good salesperson is one of the most common challenges we discuss with business owners. A major source of frustration for businesses is finding the right people to sell their product or service to potential customers. Entrepreneurs and business owners continually get frustrated that they can’t go out and connect with the market themselves because of time constraints. They instead have to trust hired salespersons to do the best possible job in selling their product.
A good salesperson is one who understands the values your product stand for. They should be familiar with the production of the product or service so that they can accurately relay information and tell customers what differentiates your product from the rest.
Defining the traits that define a good salesperson starts with defining the word ‘sales’. When you look into the dictionary for definitions of ‘sales’, you’ll find definitions sprouting technical terms on the exchange of money. As a salesperson, you should look beyond jargon and know that sales is not so much about getting money, but rather about positively influencing people.
Being influential matters
You have to be influential as a salesperson. You need to understand what the customer’s known needs are, as well as, their ‘unknown needs’. The former kind are what the customer already knows and has identified as lacking in their routine; perhaps through some research or by asking around. In cases of customers with known needs, most salespeople will go straight ahead and fixate on that need and sell the solution to the client.
Again, the role of a salesperson is to influence, not to sell.
The thing is, people don’t like to be sold to. They don’t want to feel like they are being forced into purchasing something, even if they need it. If you go into the street and randomly ask a sample of people how they’d like to be sold to, almost all of them will invariably tell you that they wouldn’t want to be sold on anything in the first place.
A good salesperson not only understands and fulfills known needs but will also acknowledge unknown needs. The ability to understand, uncover and address those unknown needs is critical. Looking to understand your customer, what they need and how you can help solve that rather than how you can convince them to buy from you is key.
Forming connections are key
A successful salesperson is one who is all about getting to know the individual. To connect with a person, the salesperson needs to relate a positive and honest experience that makes a sustainable idea and attracts customers. A solid foundation for sales is made when there is a positive experience on both sides of a transaction.
The ability to influence other people is part of our psyche. From the moment we are born, we influence people around us. Babies scream and cry to get food, but as they get older they pick up new skills, like verbal communication, to get what they want. With time, we develop new ways to communicate and influence others.
Utilizing interpersonal skills
As we grow older and develop, we start to use and understand skills that match our interests with others to form a connection. Using the ability to influence people, we are able to find jobs, make friends and find life partners. Without even realizing it, we are positively influencing people subconsciously from the moment we first meet them. A good salesperson utilizes their interpersonal skills to influence a person in a positive way.
Some salespeople are so focused on the objective, the products, and the sales benchmark that they miss out on all the stuff that creates the platform. Good sales people are those who realize and understand that the skills and capabilities they bring to the job are what they use all the time.
Potential employers are deeply interested in the background of a potential salesperson; fragments from their personal life and achievements from their professional experiences. They try to get a personal perspective to find out how successful they are in developing relationships within their personal and professional life. They want to know, is this person able to make relationships with people?
Having the ability to distinguish selling from a glorified order, and know a way to influence people is key to a good salesperson. Employers will want to know whether or not the person can fit into the team? Will they be able to work with customers, fulfilling the value of the organizations? The platform is not based on professional skills but them as people. What goes on in their mind influences the heart.
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