I was recently walking to the shops and 2 children had set up a stand to sell lemonade. As I walked by, one of them asked “Would you like to buy some lemonade?” I smiled and rather than just saying yes I asked her a question “Is it any good?” The little boy sitting next to her said with a big smile “I think so, I already drank 2 glasses of it!”
I had no choice, I had to support these 2 budding entrepreneurs. However, it did get me thinking about people at work and their approach to selling. Some people are selling products and services and others sell ideas. Regardless of what you are selling in looking at what these 2 children are doing we can all learn a few things.
Product Knowledge vs Enthusiasm
If you are selling a product or service the knowledge that you have around the offering is just as important as the enthusiasm that you have when you sell it. I am always amazed to meet the experienced sales person that seems to have memorised everything about their products or services, however their sales performance has started to plateau or slide downwards.
Too often they have lost the enthusiasm of getting to know a customer and finding new ways to connect with them and sell their energy and belief as much as the tangible product offering. I often see the opposite where the new sales person that does not have a lot of experience outsells many of the other more experienced sales people, almost always because of their enthusiasm and how contagious it is to customers.
Every Leader Sells
When I think of most leaders they are actually in the game of sales. They may not be selling products, however they are definitely selling ideas. Their ability to capture ideas and persuade and inspire their people to take action toward these ideas is what they are selling. Some leaders are natural sales people and have the ability to quickly connect with their people and share some of their enthusiasm to get them started. Other leaders unfortunately forget how important it is to sell and get stuck in old school management 101 by barking orders and criticising their people, not to mention micromanaging them.
So what are you selling? If it is a product or service make sure that your enthusiasm is contagious and that you make a positive impact on potential customers. If you are a leader of people make sure that you sell your ideas with conviction and create a spark that encourages and motivates your people to want to take action. If you would like to learn the top 5 Strategies to Selling and Influence please click here.