Why You Should Learn Salesperson Skills No Matter Your Role

No matter what your role is at your job, anyone in any industry can take the salesperson skill sets and apply them to their own roles and lives — because your internal client (co-workers) are just as important as your customers. Whether you are in the B2B or B2C selling or administration, understanding what makes a great salesperson isn’t just below the surface. Sales is deeper than just a sales pitch.

A great salesperson understands the art of listening, the power of silence, problem solving and the skills to recognize what the client needs. You can apply these skills to any role and you may just get a promotion or have more clients.

The Mindset

It’s all about experiences. Your customer and your coworkers have a perception of you from shared interactions that result in a memory of the experience. Do you want to be perceived as the pushy salesperson or the complainer at work who never listens to anyone else or offers a solution?

Anyone can adopt the salesperson model and with practice and self-awareness you can be a great leader, public relations, manager, and salesperson. Understand the difference between being a salesperson and being a good one.  

A great salesperson can make the experience enjoyable, pleasant, without coming across to ‘salesy.’  Too often as a society, we group all salespeople together as if they are all selling used cars on the wrong side of town, but without great salespeople, this country would not be what it is today.

Listen

One of the chief mistakes I see in the selling world is the seller does too much talking and not enough listening. The common personality trait of a salesman is the gift of the gab. That can be a double-edged sword if you do not have the emotional intelligence to be quiet and observe your customer.

Austin District Sales Manager Red Bull

Know when to be quiet and hear what your client is telling you. Too often, salespeople are not paying attention to what is being said — instead they are already planning a response to the few words they heard.  

Show Vs. Tell

You must take the time to ask questions. This means you are listening more than you are talking contrary to the widespread practice in the sales world. Your client knows in their mind what they think they want or are looking for. It is your job to lead them to the products or services you offer. Even though you may be an experienced employee who knows what the client needs — you want to ask questions in advance to discover the client’s specific needs, wants, or concerns.

Ask Questions

From a psychological standpoint, it helps your client relax as most like to talk about themselves. Second, it shows you are not a pushy salesperson and you value what they have to say. Last, it allows you to discover and other potential sales opportunities beyond what connected you and your client.

Allowing your client to speak gives them the personal space to connect with you and share more of what they are seeking. Although it is business, most individuals appreciate a personal touch, and you may find you have a lot in common with your prospect or customer by just taking time for small talk.

This can be anything that you and your client have in common. It can be children, shared hobbies, sports, business interests, but it is something that connects you and the client beyond just the transaction. When a salesperson takes the time even for a few moments to get to know their customers on a level beyond business, it builds the most essential piece of your relationship with your client, and that is trust.

Managing Perceptions

A client’s perception of you is crucial that they see you not as a salesperson — but someone who provides a service and value to their business model and experience.

Your Pitch

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Your sales pitch must be short, concise, but compelling. A customer’s attention or interest in what you have to say can be lost in an instant — if you show up ready to tell them what they need and why, you just lost. Remember, you have already had a moment to ask questions to discover your customer’s needs, wants, concerns, so your pitch has to be on your feet based on what the client has shared.

Model

 There is a classic model called the benefit model.  Now, as a disclaimer this works best when you and your customer have a moment to discuss, such as when the customer is seated in your office or not in a rush. You should have adequate product knowledge of whatever you are selling and take the customer’s answers and line them up with the current product or service.

For example, if it is a banking transaction and your customer is looking for a checking account with low fees, but with added protection. You should then use your feature — benefit model to pitch them a checking account with minimal fees, with identity theft protection, and overdraft protection. This takes care of the customer’s need to save money and be protected. You must reflect on the customer’s concerns through your pitch and explain how your product or service will meet these needs.

Sales Person DNA

What makes a good salesperson is how the salesperson speaks to their client. To some, this may seem simple, or perhaps even common sense. However, too often, this detail is grossly overlooked or even neglected.

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For example, in B2B sales, you must remember the key is to treat the transaction as if it is the beginning of a partnership between you and your client, and if you do your job, that is precisely what it will be. In life, we are taught it is often how you say something as opposed to what you say that matters.

As the salesperson, remember that to your client, you are expendable in the beginning. You can be replaced. You must approach the situation with humility and recognize you are there to serve your customers through sales and service. Even though you know more than your customers on what you are discussing, and you should — you should never remind your customers of that.

You show your ability through your explanation of the product or service you sell them, and by allowing your customers to feel as if they are in charge of the situation. Slow down your speech and chose verbiage that suggests you are working together. Words such as “We, us, together,” illustrate to them they are not alone or forgotten after the completion of the transaction.

Humility and loyalty make a great salesperson, and it has been my experience that these qualities are what I consider the foundation of a good salesperson. Remember, your goal is to turn every customer into a repeat customer. Loyalty is scarce in today’s world — especially in sales.

Austin Red Bull District Manager

People will return time and time again to the salesperson they know will take care of them, treat them with integrity, and in return, they will give you the best advertising available — referrals. The best salespeople transform a conversation between two everyday people into a sale with a longstanding relationship. Sales role or not, these skills will benefit your current role, and increase the probability of getting your next client.


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