Why you need to learn sales
Most of you don’t know what I do for a living, so I’ll take the next few sentences to explain. I’m a stock market trader and a marketer in the fitness industry. My focus is more on the marketing side as I find stocks uninteresting and it’s not something I need to spend hours on per week. I’m not directly involved in sales however, I have studied sales techniques as I feel it’s beneficial as a marketer.
When someone thinks of a salesman or saleswoman, we usually pertain them to money-hungry and sleazy people who don’t care about our welfare. They have one goal: to sell you a product or service, nothing more and nothing less. Now, that was the view I took until I started in the marketing and sales world, the current view I take is that they’re far from that. Stereotypes do contain partial truths and I’m not going to say there aren’t scummy marketers and salespeople, there definitely are. If anything, there are more money-motivated people in sales than there are genuine individuals who aspire to help.
The art of speaking and listening is mastered by salespeople. They’re easy to talk to, can relate to your concerns, and act according to your requirements. Granted, most of them probably don’t actually care but I feel like you can tell when they’re genuine. Give me a few minutes of your time to explain my reasonings as to why individuals in sales have an advantage in life and how you can benefit.
We negotiate every day of our lives
If you haven’t noticed already, you are negotiating every day of your life whether you like to admit it or not. Negotiating doesn’t necessarily involve business transactions. It can be as simple as discussing with your partner the items you wish to put on your shopping list or, speaking to your friends about why one car is better value for money than the other. The outcome of these negotiations is to find the middle ground where both parties are happy, and a compromise is to be accepted by either side. If you’re too stubborn, it’s difficult to form an agreement and one person may not be pleased with the result. Learning this useful skill will enable better communication and will allow the understanding of other people by analysing the situation and trying to keep the involved individuals content.
Communication involves listening attentively
People love to talk and explain their thoughts and processes yet when it comes to listening, our minds are absent. A common misconception in sales is having the skill to talk, it’s of course a crucial skill to possess but what holds greater merit is the art of attentiveness. Hearing what others have to say is a skill in and of itself, the struggle here isn’t listening but it’s not being inquisitive.
In a negotiation, two things are happening: giving and taking. You’re giving your views and taking your peer’s views. Treating everyday conversations in this manner will make you a better communicator. One-sided conversations have no substance and are frankly mundane. Having a great conversation has to include a mutual interest just like a successful sale needs interest from the buyer. Spending time asking questions is a small act that will make your peer feel valued, it’s a small request that is rarely fulfilled.
I think we would all benefit if we learned the fundamentals of sales/negotiation. Small things like when you go to buy your next car could result in money saved. Even in a job interview, if you know your value as an employee, don’t say yes to the first offer; negotiate.
Genuine salespeople have it too hard, the industry has been tainted by worldwide scammers, if only you understood how the rudiments of sales can help you. I can only hope you’ve benefitted from this blog, if not, I enjoyed writing this regardless of the benefit factor.
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