Everyone has an idea of the typical salesperson in their head. Whether it’s the deal closing investment banker of Wall Street, or a slimy telemarketer who rings your house up during dinner to sell air duct cleaning services to you. What I think about sales is that it’s so much bigger that than. Being a salesperson goes far beyond a position in a firm. Sales is apart of everyday life. Having recently learned this through being introduced to sales in my work it has opened my eyes to the way I view relationships – both past and future – and how I look at achieving goals.
When I joined Desk Nibbles I was aware that the bulk of my work would be with the sales team since this was the area that needed help the most. Having never been in the position where I have needed to sell services and products to prospective clients (complete strangers), this was a challenge that I was excited to accomplish, yet also nervous.
“My first call was something like a hot mess of words separated by stutters.”
If you’ve ever made a cold call before, you know the first one is incredibly intimidating, no matter how much self confidence you have. My first call was something like a hot mess of words separated by stutters. Easily having just experienced one of the more uncomfortable situations for myself I found that I wanted to learn how to sell even more. There was a desire to learn and never have to endure a terrible phone call again.
Having some awesome and experienced mentors around me, I picked up a lot of great advice, tips, and techniques that have helped me improve on calling up complete strangers and pitching the idea of a new, modern, and healthy way of boosting office morale and productivity. I am now in the latter part of my full-time placement here at Desk Nibbles and I’m incredibly proud to say that I’ve gained the ability to walk complete cold call leads through everything we offer, tailor the call and service we provide to them, build and monitor my sales pipeline, and my favourite thing of all, close over the phone.
“very few of us acknowledge that sales skills are needed in a variety of situations, but is nonetheless very real reality”
The most important insight that I have learned is that sales is simply persuasive communication.The truth is, very few of us acknowledge that sales skills are needed in a variety of situations, but is nonetheless very real reality. When you were a kid and you tried to convince your parents to get a chocolate bar at the grocery check out, you were trying to close a deal. Trying to convince a group of friends to go out to get drinks? That’s sales. In every job interview you have been in, you’re selling yourself and the value you can bring to the employers. What this allowed me to realize was that when it comes to talking to a lead on the phone about snack plans, there doesn’t need to be any more pressure on you than there normally would be in an everyday conversation. Knowing this, the act of talking over the phone became far less daunting.
Having broken down what I imagined to be these huge barriers to becoming a successful salesperson, deals started coming in and it felt great. When I began to understand how sales worked, I started to reflect on past events in my life such as getting a job or receiving good grade. With my new found insights, it came to me that these successful events happened because I communicated an idea effectively. Whether that idea was “you should hire me” or “you should give me an +A” did not matter. I needed to explain to people what they would get in order for me to get what I wanted. This another key insight into understanding how to be successful: relationships need to be mutually beneficial.
“every human takes part in being a salesperson every single day, whether they know it or not”
If we look at some examples, such as a kid asking for a candy bar at the grocery store, we see this play out. The child might say that they’ll clean their room if their parents buy them the candy bar, giving them something that is of value in exchange. It’s the exact same scenario that plays out when selling a prospective client on one of our services. We give them a great employee benefit in such a way that can save them time and money in exchange for the cost of the program. When I started to change how I look at even the smallest relationships I have with this new awareness, I found that I was having more success in communicating with others and achieving goals.
The idea that sales is a dodgy profession due to its history of manipulation or other negative connotations doesn’t take into account the fact that every human takes part in being a salesperson every single day, whether they know it or not. Effective communication and mutually beneficial relationships, to me, are the two most important pillars of leading a great personal and professional life, and skills that I plan on developing everyday.