It Might be True - You're Not Good at SalesMar 15, 2019
How many times have you felt, “I’m just not a good at sales.”?
I remember feeling this way. It was 2008, I’d just started as a sales program specialist at a tool and machining distributor and I was continually being pulled into the office to be told I was saying the wrong things to the customer. I wanted to quit.
I was making my numbers at the last minute, so every month-end was a feeling of desperation and anxiety. I’d have a few big opportunities and then fall flat on my face the next time I tried what I thought I’d done to have the same success. I tried doing what the management was telling me to do but it felt scripted, not like me, and the more I did it the less I felt it worked. I felt better if I could just express what I believed was important for the customer, not the agenda of the company. Sound familiar?
Feeling spammy or like your customer doesn’t see your true intentions?
Scrambling out of desperation for your business to stay afloat each month?
Ready to give up because what everyone who’s an “expert” or “guru” is telling you just isn’t working?
I am not sure when it happened but I do know how it happened. One day I just started getting it right. It was like I was gifted the “She Knows How to Sell without Spam” Fairy Sales Mother, and all of a sudden people started to respond to me, doors opened and they trusted me, and more importantly I was able to purposefully provide and serve them. And, I started making money in return.
What I want you to know is, there is no “Fairy Sales Mother”. There is no gift you can unwrap that will automatically make you a good salesperson, and for some of us being a salesperson just isn’t in our DNA.
It’s true, some of you, it isn’t for you. Some home-based business owners are right, they just aren’t going to be good at sales, and here’s why:
#1 Believing Sales is a Gift and Not a Skill You Desire to Learn
It happens to corporate, for the entrepreneur, and home-based business alike. The need for salespeople is a constant demand, job opportunities are always available, and having a creative gift will always open the door for the possibility of selling that gift. Too often though a person who has a purpose to serve others with their product, service, or offering obsesses and compares themselves to others who are turning their purpose into profits. They create excuses to not believe that selling is a skill they need to have the desire to learn by saying things like, “well she has a good base and lives in a higher income demographic”. They become judgemental and believe that if someone was really caring about their purpose like they do they’d be in the same place, not making a profit. The longer someone stays in this mindset of believing it’s been gifted instead of having a desire to learn it, the longer they will be stuck in sharing their purpose but not actually making turning out a profit.
#2 Not Connecting Your Confidence to the Customer Relationship
Above when I shared how I was ready to quit my corporate sales job within the first few months to a year of getting it, this was exactly what was going on with me. I was confident that I truly cared about what I was offering the customer would help serve them, but I wasn’t confident in on how to connect the dots for them feel my intentions or ability to serve them, so they weren’t confident in returning their trust to offer that relationship back to me. I needed to be conscious of how clearly I could convey to my customer that he could trust me. Someone who isn’t confident in how to be clear about their intentions or desires to take the time to show their ability that the customer can be confident they know how to solve their problems or needs won’t be good at sales.
#3 You’re Afraid to Tell Your Customer What is In it For You or You Think this is All About You
I remember my supervisor that first year at my corporate sales job saying to me, “It’s all about you, Gena…” in a condescending way after he left my desk after listening in to a sales call. I was so offended, hurt, and embarrassed I went to the bathroom and broke down crying. How could he be so cruel? I was getting to know the customer, didn’t he keep reminding me “Sales is a Relationship”!! Looking back, this was a big moment of understanding what it meant to be a “Good Salesperson”. I wanted to know the customer so that I’d feel comfortable, I wasn’t thinking at that moment about the customer’s comfort, I was thinking about my own. I was sharing too much about why I felt it mattered for them to buy from us, very little understanding of what they needed from us, and too afraid to share why their time with me would help me fill my need to serve them with what they needed. Someone who isn’t good at sales will focus solely on why it matters for someone to buy and not on why it matters for them to find out how they can serve.