Written by Sean McPheat |
We’re often asked what are the key components of success when it comes to sales. We always say there are no quick fixes and no short cuts to success, and few salespeople are willing to do the hard work that makes sales easy.
But there are a few chosen aptitudes and attitudes that, when carried out effectively, add greater dimension to a salesperson’s acumen, and are able to support the short and long-term development of their skill-sets.
If you want a quick and dirty way to build success, then try these for size. I call them Four Eyes, because there are four of them and they all start with I.
Firstly, improve your Investigation work. Nothing will make you look dumber than a dumb person in a dumb shop in the centre of Dumbville than not preparing effectively for a call. Investigation can take many turnings on the same road. It can be simple web-site analysis, identifying names and positions to be contacted. Or it can be deep analysis, working out the future plans of the business and committing time to checking out current and future trends within their industry.
Suffice to say, your investigation work can always be improved, so look at how you go about it.
Secondly, get better at prospect Interviews. Some of the best known people on television aren’t those who can just talk for a living. Think of people like Oprah, Jay Leno, Michael Parkinson, and the like.
What makes them special? It’s their ability to get the best out of their interviewees and make the audience go away feeling they have learned a great deal. Being able to interview prospects effectively is a great skill, and it may take time but it’s worth it in the long run.
You need to think of power questions that your competition haven’t even thought of, building your knowledge of what is required so that your prospect can advance their business opportunities. Great interviewing skills help you develop your solutions specifically for their business. No two presentations will therefore be the same, because no two problems are the same.
Third…put the emphasis on constant Improvement. All great salespeople are able to see how important improving their skills is. Learning from experience and developing skills based on that wisdom is paramount if you are to stay ahead of the competition.
Just learning about your product and services isn’t enough. It’s improving your ability to communicate, handle complaints, deal with objections, negotiate better, gain commitment and improve your overall sales acumen that will count in the long run.
And finally, find a level of Inspiration. It doesn’t matter if you are a dull person, your solutions can make prospects feel that they are taking their business forward, making them more competitive in their market place, or improving their productivity or chances of profitability.
When they feel you are the best solution for them in the long run, you get them to feel inspired about the choices they make. It makes them feel good about themselves and helps identify future business opportunities. Inspiring someone about your products is an awesome experience, so it should be something you practice and make into a reality.
So, there you have it. Four Eyes (I’s) that can make a profound difference in the way you portray yourself to the prospect. Think how you can display them and there’s no doubt you will see the customer in greater focus.
Originally published: 23 October, 2013