Vivid Views is my series of articles, blog posts and press releases show-casing my work as an author and reflecting my many years in business and self-employment. They are a blend of my real life experiences, professional insights, personal views and fun stories.
My hope is that in them you find enlightenment and inspiration. 'Do You Want To Know A Secret? is the 17th in the series.
Listen – do you want to know a secret? Then pay close attention …
You may well have heard it said, “I don't like selling. I don't like sales people. I don't like being sold to.” You may even have pronounced it yourself. But why? I believe there are two inter-related answers. The first is that the statements reveal a lack of self-confidence in the speaker. The second is that they show a lack of understanding of what selling is.
So, what is selling? Answer – it is a life skill. As such it is an activity which all humans (and many animal species) practice regularly. Some are better at it than others, but all humans sell. The most obvious regular example is in attracting a mate. Everyone goes into 'sell mode' when that is on the agenda! Those who work at improving their skill in this department, improve their chances of 'catching the gal or the guy'. So why not apply it to other areas of life as well?
There persists among many the common misconception that selling is somehow 'unworthy', that it's carried out by stereotypical, fast-talking, foot-in-door, 'wide boy', market traders as often depicted in popular comedy; but that is not selling. Real professional selling is all about communication.
Let's replace 'selling' in the opening prejudiced lines with the word 'communication' and see how that alters the whole slant of the statement :
“I don't like communication. I don't like communicators. I don't like being communicated with.” Sounds a bit narrow-minded doesn't it? And 'silly' too. Yet that is what “I don't like selling … “ amounts to. It's not a very well thought through statement when viewed in that light. Communication, rather than implying some sort of one-sided, brow-beating exercise, is, by definition, a two way relationship. There is talking and there is listening. Good communicators listen more than they talk and that is the paramount skill of an accomplished sales person – listening.
Let's cement the point further by replacing 'selling' in the opening lines with the word 'listening' :
“I don't like listening. I don't like listeners. I don't like being listened to!” It gets ridiculous doesn't it? While there are shouty, virtue-signaller types and selfish boors who don't want to listen and have no intention of doing so, it's improbable that you have come across, or are ever likey to encounter, anyone who objects to being listened to. On the contrary, being listened to is what most people crave. A life-skilled, professional sales person satisfies that craving. They listen, they empathise.
In everyday life you too can do likewise. For, “I don't like selling,” substitute, “I do like listening!” It really is that simple. A case of ... Listen, if you want to know a secret!
I am Tom Riach. I live and write in the sunny south of Portugal.
My latest novel is 'Too Early For A Glass Of Wine?' Claim your copy by clicking on the image below.
DO YOU WANT TO KNOW A SECRET? is an original copyright Tom Riach feature.
I hope you enjoyed this Vivid View and found it to be of value.
To learn more please visit me on my Author Page.
See you there! Regards, Tom.