I used to tell people all of the time “I don’t want to be in sales”. I fought it for years. I wanted a career that didn’t involve me selling. I hated the title “Account Executive”. YES. I have knocked on doors. I have made more cold calls than I care to admit. I have also had people breathing down my neck asking me what was in my pipeline for next month. I felt sick to my stomach every day that I went to work.
Well, I don’t have the title of “Account Executive” any more. I don’t knock on doors and hand out business cards. BUT… What I DO every day NOW though is SELL. The one thing I loathed for so many years, I do daily.
What changed? Why am I happier than I was 15 years ago?
Well, I realized the world doesn’t spin without sales. Every company sells something. A company cannot exist without a sales team. The minute I realized I have been selling my whole life is the minute I felt okay with being a salesperson. I love my job.
You see, sales doesn’t have to be miserable. Sales can be a heck of a lot of fun. The one thing I wish a successful sales person would have told me years ago was the formula to success. It really isn’t as difficult as you might think. As I look back on every successful person I have ever encountered, they all do 3 things.
- They never compromise their integrity
- They cherish every relationship.
- They are incredible at networking.
I have seen many sales people achieve success who later failed by simply not doing the right things. They have not focused on the relationship and are in it for the quick and easy dollar. The thing is, we live in a small world. What comes around goes around.
I have spent years developing relationships. There is rarely an introduction I will turn down. Time permitting, I will make time to meet with and talk to individuals to whom I am introduced. Why do I do this? Is it a waste of my time?
Your cold calling days are now over. When you treat people as they want to be treated, they will go out of their way to help you. People want to help people who have helped them. You see, the longer I am in the workforce, I realize how important relationships are.
I get excited watching others succeed and worry less about my own success. Why? I know in this crazy world we are all here to give a lending hand. I know if I do the little things, I won’t have to worry about my own success because people want to help those who have helped and given THEM the boost of confidence they needed.
Taking time to talk to people and getting to know them on a personal level may take you out of your comfort zone, but it will pay off. You are not only networking, but building a relationship that will last for years.
I wish someone told me when I started my career to think about the big picture. The most successful sales people I know aren’t thinking about the company they are working for TODAY, they are thinking about the future. They are thinking about their CAREER and how each conversation will lead to their success. It may not have an immediate pay off, but that isn’t the game we are playing here. The game is a long one- it begins when you start your career and it goes through retirement.
Maybe you should re-think your sales strategy. The relationships, networking, and your integrity will make you the most successful.
That is the true secret. Wouldn’t you agree?