‘Sales’ is a word that arouses different feelings for different individuals. For customers, it conjures up the image of a talkative and aggressive person pushing her product or service in their hands. Thus the feeling of being defensive comes up. For a business owner, sales is a heavenly word because more sales mean more business. And thus the assertive feeling with growth and optimism kicks in. So as we witness a big gap in the buyer and seller emotions, we need to look into a way to bridge this gap.
It is often said that an organization thrives not on its financial model or expansion plans but on its value system, ethos, and culture. In a similar fashion, the value system in your selling is what brings you more business. As the business landscape is evolving each day, the one thing that forms the foundation of the sales value system is authenticity. Even before you get into learning and practicing sales techniques and skills, it’s imperative that you develop a sales ethos which matches with your persona.
It’s a common phenomenon, especially in women, that though they are highly passionate about their product or service when it comes to selling, they feel discomfort. If you feel a misalignment in the act of selling or it makes you feel unpleasant, then you have not found a way to match your selling style with your personality and values. Being authentic has been a core value for every successful individual. It comes from truly being who you are. If you try to be anyone other than yourself, your prospect will easily be able to see through you and do not trust you. No one buys from whom they do not trust. But, you can definitely improvise and elevate your authentic self in selling by being who you are. Let’s see how.
Listen to your gut: be aware of your emotional antennas and observe when you are in sync with the prospect and when you are feeling disconnected. A mere observance will help you take a course of action which can make the conversation more meaningful. Over time, you’ll be more natural in your conversations and bring incongruence in what you feel, say and deliver.
Lead with the intention of helping: As we move away from the days of ‘hard selling’, entrepreneurs as salespeople have to take up the role of problem-solvers rather than self-centric pushers. The entire process of sales now is being driven by finding solutions that fulfill the needs of your customer. This approach of helping rids you from the sleaziness of selling. Once comfortable, you will be able to be more authentic at selling.
Communicate what you believe in: When the prospect sees you as someone who is asking questions, uncovering the problem and has the focus on advising the right course of action even if it means not selling her own product or service in the scenario where it is not a right fit, you surely will earn the respect for the long-term. Building relationships are more important than closing deals. So speak what you know is right for the prospect. You will be much more at peace with yourself and not get into conflicting situations where you are not able to deliver as expected.
As a woman, you have traits that you can leverage beautifully when selling for your business. Just discover those that you can confidently carry in a sales meeting, find opportunities for value creation, have a positive expectancy and generate more business for yourself.
It’s no compulsion that you have to be an extrovert or aggressive person to sell. You just have to be yourself. You just have to be authentic