Everybody sells whether they know it or not. If you’re not aware you’re selling, you’re probably doing it very badly!
If you’re in sales this article will be really useful for you. Those who are new to selling, tell us the principles are a
revelation for them. If you’re established, it will reinforce your belief in what you do and give you a different perspective on how to further improve your performance. Whatever field you’re in, you need to be able to sell – it’s a fact. At some point in life, you will need to sell yourself, your ideas, your products, your business, your team, your services or your opinion. You continually have to influence and persuade people. That is true for all of us. The articles in this series will show you how you can do that while engaging more deeply with the people around you. It will be beneficial to everyone in your life.
If you’re reading this because you want to become a more highly skilled salesperson, I commend you and thank you. This is a valuable investment in yourself, and one that will have a significant impact on your future – but only if you read, understand and apply what you learn. If you follow the instructions and the system, answer the questions, try the exercises and apply what you’re learning, you’ll become a highly successful salesperson.
Selling doesn’t just help in your business, it changes your life!
Nothing is more important than relationships, they are everything to us. Think about anything you want or have in your life, and think about who you associate with having it. People are at the heart of everything we do. What you learn in these articles will also strengthen your relationships with your family, partner, children, friends, colleagues and clients. It will help you understand the people around you. It will stimulate your thinking and allow you to achieve things you never thought possible. It will help you attract opportunities for growth, development and ultimately success.
I hope your interest is piqued and that you’re excited. You should be! Whatever your current circumstances, whatever your ambitions, get ready for a step change in your abilities and the most incredible future you can imagine!
What’s your perception of selling? If It’s negative, stop for a moment and think.
Before we start, let’s do a reality check. A lot of people absolutely detest salespeople. They consider them to be slimy, smarmy, pushy, overzealous, loud, crass, cocky, obnoxious and full of themselves. If you’re a salesperson (as I was), you may have encountered people who have this view. And if you’ve worked as part of a large sales organisation that doesn’t train its salespeople, you may even understand why some people have this opinion. The truth is, there are a lot of bad salespeople out there. Now when I say ‘bad salespeople’, I mean lazy or untrained salespeople – salespeople who have either a) never been trained in their role or b) never taken the time to learn how to sell properly. While it might seem difficult and time consuming to learn to sell ‘the right way’, selling more effectively would significantly benefit them and their clients.
You must focus on ‘three vital areas of high performance’ – they’re simple but not obvious.
I have learned throughout my career that for sales people to be successful we must focus on three vital areas: psychology, skills and systems. Psychology is the foundation of success in sales and will determine whether or not we believe we are able to succeed. Without belief, we cannot convince ourselves that we are capable of success. We will continually revisit principles of psychology throughout these articles.
Selling is a learned skill and can be taught to anyone who is willing to learn and change the way that they work. I cannot emphasise enough the need for change. The world is changing rapidly. Your clients (and their clients) and their needs are changing almost constantly. The only way you can continue to be relevant to your clients is by changing the way you work. You must continually improve yourself so that you can meet their future requirements. In the book INSPIRE, INFLUENCE, SELL, I’ll share with you a tried, tested and trusted way to improve your sales capability, so that you’ll become the best salesperson you’re able to be, and in turn, surpass your clients’ needs, now and in the future.
Selling is serving
Some people have a hard time shaking the negative connotation that comes with a position in sales, or even the thought of selling. But if you consider selling to be serving, you’ll think differently about sales. You’re helping your clients get everything they need, and you’re ensuring they choose you to provide it for them. This shift in thinking can be liberating if you have any reservations about what selling ‘should be’. You should be establishing a foundation that is ethical, honest and about serving your client – this is what separates ‘the best in the market’ from ‘the rest of the market’.
If you want to go further, in future articles I’ll introduce you to the INSPIRe Secret Sales System, a simple, powerful and effective system that will imprint on your unconscious mind so that you won’t have to concentrate on remembering it.
This system will naturally become your preferred sales methodology. Throughout the book and these articles, you’ll see specific references to the INSPIRe Secret Sales System as well as more general references to the sales process. This is intentional. It acknowledges the importance of structure and processes when it comes to successful selling, whether through the INSPIRe Secret Sales System or a similar sales process.
We’ll also address motivation, the importance of changing behaviours and habits, and how to sustain improvements over the long term. If you’re interested in quick fixes or wins, or just selling more, you’ll see moderate improvement as a result of working through these articles or the book, but I ask you to dig deeper. Join me on the voyage of discovery and make a commitment to ‘master your art’ over the long term. The content of these articles was born out of a passion for learning about success, high performance and personal transformation.
The INSPIRe Secret Sales System came about through my own search for the most effective sales methodology. I spent years tailoring the techniques and principles of other sales programmes because I couldn’t find one that was simple enough to use consistently (without multiple aids and prompts) but comprehensive enough to make a real impact. I’ve amalgamated my skills and experience across sales, strategic account management, leadership, business strategy, coaching and NLP (neuro-linguistic programming) to create these articles and the accompanying training that I deliver to organisations. With a career history that spans over twenty-five years and many disciplines, I am in the unique position of being able to offer this sales success model.
If you’re working hard in sales but not reaping the results you know you should be, then working harder isn’t the answer.
If you haven’t read ‘The Greatest Salesman in the World’ by Og Mandino, I highly recommend it. This iconic book explains what it takes to become successful salespeople. While Mandino’s book teaches people about the what, these articles teach you about the how – specifically, what are the steps you should follow? What is the ‘recipe’ for sales success? If you’re working hard in sales but not reaping the results you know you should be, then working harder isn’t the answer. Changing your approach using a tried and tested method, combined with hard work, will put you on the road to success. I advise you not just to read but to ‘work through’ these articles to apply what you’re learning. There are many opportunities to reflect and take action in ways that will support your development and strengthen your ability to inspire, influence and sell.
If you want to discuss anything in these articles please connect with me by following the link at the end of this article. Or, if you want to get future content faster you can order your own copy of INSPIRE, INFLUENCE, SELL here.
What gets measured gets done, what gets measured and fed back gets done better and what gets rewarded gets repeated!
If you’ve never measured your, or your teams, sales capability, then you’re missing out on priceless insights, awareness and potential. The act of measurement and creating self awareness can trigger intrinsic motivation and start the ripple of change that drive exponential future growth for your business.
There’s a simple and powerful way to do this for your team, and it’s completely free of charge.
Whether you’re new to sales, an experienced sales professional or a leader looking to improve the consistency and performance of your sales organisation, you’ll gain immense value from these articles, the scorecard and the INSPIRE, INFLUENCE, SELL book. Our systems map out a memorable sales process over several steps and also include mastery content for each stage of the system, which will give you deeper insight and expertise. The combination of foundational and specialist material ensures that no matter where you’re starting from, you can become a skilled salesperson.
You might want to work through these articles at the foundational level and return to the Sales Mastery sections once you get to grips with the overall system and have developed your skills. Each article starts with an experience story in which I share relevant, valuable anecdotes. If you prefer to dive straight into the sales system, you can skip that content. These articles are designed to be accessible and flexible, so that you get the most out of them.
As you work through each stage, I suggest you make notes in a journal or notebook. This will help you learn and adopt the content.