There are a number of people out there willing to offer advice on how to improve your sales performance as a sales professional.
Lots of “5 ways to……..”, “Three things that….” or “How to sell more in x days…”. The truth is that they all offer value but there is no silver bullet.
Professional sales is a skill that is crafted out over a number of years of fine tuning what you do and how you behave. Taking on all the information that is available to you and using what works for you. Just because you listen to something doesn’t mean you have to use it or that you should, you can use your own common sense to apply what you think is worth trying.
The single best way to be better at sales?
And I don’t just mean stay switched on and be off your phone at the next annual training session your company has put on for you. I mean get out there and create time in your daily and weekly routine to find as much information as you can. Cram it in like you are studying for that final exam. That final exam is every day in the world of sales, you are trying to close business on a daily or weekly basis… When was the last time you crammed?
It has amazed me over the years of employing sales people when I ask a simple question in an interview, like “What is your favourite book on sales or business” or “When was the last time you educated yourself”. All I get back across the table is a blank look.
If sales is your chosen profession then treat it like one. I will make an assumption that if you work in a B2B sales environment then most likely the person you call your customer who is also a professional in what they do is investing in their professional development. In many professions it’s mandatory but in sales we exist in this arrogance that don’t have to improve or that it will just happen with time. Time is a great developer but its going to take longer than you want it too.
Ask yourself the question, is my competition working harder than me? If you are not flat out educating yourself right now then in all probability someone else is. I don’t just mean the direct competitor against your product and service now. What about the other person who applies for that next job that you want? How hard are they working today? Will they be better prepared for that promotion?
Does your current behaviour and attitude towards self education match your ambition?
If you have ambition to achieve but are not currently going out of your way to create time to better yourself through eduction then I question your ambition.
I am sorry but In 2017 we have no excuse for not finding this information, its everywhere…
Books – Amazon will help you find the right material and deliver it next day…
Audio books – download them on to your phone and stick your headphones in!
Youtube – its free! And full of amazing content
Facebook – follow relevant people and pages
Twitter – same as above
Linkedin – connect and follow people who inspire you
Reach out and connect with fellow professionals who have done it before.
Find a mentor – I will do a separate blog post on this.
There are many more if you just spend some time looking out for them. Once you change your mindset on wanting to absorb new information you will be surprised how quickly and easily you find it.
Finding the time
I appreciate that time is limited with a busy work life and personal commitments but if you want to find the time you can and will, its a matter of priorities.
If you do the following then you have time to learn:
Spend hours on social media
commute to work
Spend hours watching box sets
sleep late in the mornings
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Richard Few, Founder – Sales Geek