Written by Sean McPheat |
Our profession is full of myths and misconceptions. It has a plethora of ideas and techniques that have followed sales people down the ages, some of which have been built on shaky ground, others on foundations that are so old fashioned, they wouldn’t support any modern type of analysis.
Here are my ideas on the biggest myths that our profession still harbours under a dark rock somewhere:
Myth 1) Top Quality Salespeople are able to wing it…they don’t need to prepare.
Actually, the best we have met recognise that the more ‘training’ they get and receive, the more practice they carry out. They don’t leave their success to chance. They see that if they don’t practice, prepare, rely on a well-defined approach and build top class referrals, they stand a big chance of being dead in the water.
Myth 2) Top Quality Salespeople are primarily motivated by money.
If money is all that motivates you, stand by to be knocked of the top of the perch. These days, it’s the relationships with their clients that top salespeople recognise is the foundation for all success. As the saying goes, you need to be and do before you can have. Top salespeople put the emphasis on solving problems, meeting needs and building opportunities for clients, and they remember that the money is the end-result, not the be-all-and-end-all.
Myth 3) Top Quality Salespeople have the ‘gift of the gab’ and are able to explain everything every time.
In reality, the best salespeople are excellent listeners not speakers. When they present solutions, they are based on what they have found out during the relationship-building process. Their listening skills are highly tuned and they have built up their knowledge by diagnosing before prescribing.
Myth 4) Top Quality Salespeople don’t need coaching or training…they know everything they need to know
Moore’s Law states that the number of transistors on integrated circuits doubles every eighteen months to two years. This law has been applied to many other industries and factors.
If we recognise that our knowledge of new ideas, techniques, concepts and processes is doubling every year or two, and we are not keeping up with them, we cannot claim to be ahead of the game or the competition.
How many books have you read, CDs have you listened to or DVDs have you watched lately that have increased your applicable knowledge of the modern day buyer or modern day sales? If you’re truthful answer is ‘none’, then you are being left behind in the race for success in the modern world. Top performers constantly strive to improve and get better.
Myth 5) Top Quality Salespeople have all the breaks…they get leads easily and close them quickly
This myth is perpetuated by sales people who are jealous of others’ success, thinking that they get all the great leads and don’t have to try hard. Actually, the opposite is probably closer to the truth.
Top sales people today recognise that leads don’t just fall into their lap. They proactively and consistently put themselves out thereby marketing themselves where people are looking. Their Facebook business pages are up-to-date and offer value. Their Twitter account is all about business and success stories that are valuable to readers, Their Google Plus page includes clients and prospects that consistently keep in contact and improve relationships. Their Linkedin pages show how they give before wanting to receive, and offer so much ‘good stuff’ that their prospects are contacting them in their droves.
If we can get past these myths and understand how the modern-day salesperson really feels about how they should do their job, it opens up so many more opportunities to us and helps us achieve so much more in benefits and achievements.
Originally published: 28 March, 2013