As a Keynote Speaker, I often ask my audience: exactly what IS your title? Or perhaps I should say titles plural since we’re often asked to wear many hats these days in our hustling, bustling work environment. And their answers? Are all over the board.
Bottom line: No matter what your job title or description, ALL of us are in SALES. Oh, and if you don’t realize that SALES is the single, most important aspect of your job, then you will never experience the success you want and deserve.
“Whoa now,” some of them reply, “No way. I don’t like, want to be in, have an aptitude for, or need to even understand SALES to do my job.” WRONG! Not only is sales important to your career, but it is a significant part of every personal relationship you have as well. Not convinced? Keep reading!
First, let’s take a hard look at that often dreaded word: SALES. While it’s true that millions of people have chosen SALES as their profession—there are also millions of others who have an opposite reaction. In fact, many people avoid any job or project that involves even a hint of sales. Even if it would mean moving up the ladder or making more money. Having been in sales most of my life, and loving it, I decided to research this aversion. I interviewed hundreds of “anti-sales” people and this is what I heard most often: “I’m not a pushy person.” ”I don’t want to have to convince other people to do what they don’t want to do.” “I hate talking to people I don’t know.”“ I don’t want to be held accountable for results and live with quotas.” No wonder SALES has a bad rap with those kind of perceptions!
So — let’s re-define SALES. Great sales is the art of POSITIVE INFLUENCE. It’s about sharing, not pressuring. Listening, not intimidating. Helping, not manipulating. Collaborating, not coercing. You are SELLING every time you are in the act of teaching, training, mentoring, coaching, helping, parenting, relating, loving and nurturing. Parents influence their children’s attitudes, beliefs, food choices and behaviors. Leaders influence their employees’ production, performance, goals, skillset and future success. Spouses influence their partner’s ability to love, trust, and communicate openly. We influence our co-workers attitudes, morale and productivity. And we all influence our customers’ willingness to believe in us, trust us, partner with us, bring their business to us and rave about us. SELLING is on-going almost every time we communicate with another person.
As a keynote speaker, one of most requested topic is “How to Get People on Board.” Why? Because it is about the art of POSITIVE INFLUENCE–the single most important skill a person can have in the workplace today. Think about your job. Doesn’t it depend on your ability to get people on board with your thoughts, ideas, and projects? Aren’t you often looking for support? Consensus? Buy-in? Don’t you need ownership on the part of others in order for you to get the job done the right way? Well guess what? All of those things require you to SELL. Starting with selling yourself. If I am going to believe in you, work for you, support you, and help you then I have got to BELIEVE IN YOU FIRST!
So you see sales isn’t always about selling a product or service. SALES is just about getting through life being heard. It’s about working together better, getting along, finding common ground, and communicating in a way that your ideas, opinions and even actions get heard, appreciated, recognized and respected. SALES is a reflection on your values, ideals, ethics, beliefs, attitudes and vision. Which is why the people who avoid sales because they don’t want to be held accountable for quotas is misplaced. As humans, we are always accountable anyway. We are totally responsible for how we act and the choices we make. A quota doesn’t change that. So the main question is this: Are people truly buying YOU? Are you putting what you want people to know about you out there for the world to see in the right way? I hope so. You future depends upon it! I created a powerful (but short!) video on the topic — click on the video below to have a look!
Still think you’re not in sales? Click here to connect with me on LinkedIn and let’s talk about it!
See you there!