I spend a lot of time working with business owners on the factors that are critical to business growth and success.
One of the issues that business leaders often raise is an intense dislike of sales and a desire to simply hand off the responsibility to someone else. When it comes to sales meetings they feel a bit like the guy in the photo above – turning up to a gunfight with a banana wearing a shiny suit: really uncomfortable.
Yet, handing sales off to another staff member, or hiring specifically for that purpose in smaller companies without dedicated sales people can be a challenge:
- At what point in the life of the business do you hire?
- How do you compensate a sales person where no baseline incentive structure or sales conversion norm is in place?
- How do you improve the probability of success, particularly when the owner hates sales and feels lost providing guidance to their new direct report?
Selling can be a somewhat emotionally bruising exercise. And when you hit a purple patch it can be the best thing you can do with your clothes on (other than playing guitar or playing golf <insert your own favourite hobby here> :).
Product Belief is Critical to Successful Selling
The missing ingredient for most is true product belief. If product belief is high enough, resistance falls away.
If you genuinely believe that your product makes your customer’s life better,
aren’t you doing them a disservice by not helping them to own it?
If you don’t believe your product makes your customer’s life better, you need to work on the product, your competitive understanding of the market – and on you – until you do.
What to do if selling is uncomfortable?
- Gamify it. Change the dynamic to make the process more fun and more of a learning experience. People are really interesting – so study them. Find out what makes them tick, and you will understand better why they are looking into your product.
- Get simple systems to track progress (see Simple Sales Forecasts To Drive Business Growth)
- Invest in creating and maintaining a positive mindset. Take care with what you listen to, and who you spend time with.
- Get some great marketing to break the ice.
- Get some help. Having someone in your corner to help in this process, and work with you to improve your chances of success really does make a difference. I coach owners and I know it works.