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You Are A Process!
A dynamic that frequently occurs in a sales call, is when you take a customer reaction or lack of reaction personally. You are not feeling well, you are sitting in the lobby and suddenly get a rush of anxiety, you are trapped in your head and pondering what you may have done wrong. Stop!. A part of the sales profession that you can fall back on is morphing into process mode. That being said, it is not as simple as it seems. How do you depersonalized the moment and escape the oppressive self-introspection that you are stuck in.
Sales is profession that lacks a set of standardized competencies. People do not go to College to study Sales Methodologies. The way that people have learned has been through experience, street cred and studying the Sales Gurus. These Gurus have predominantly been men, and historically, it is fair to say that they have been writing for the quintessential male sales person. Let me offer you a competency that suits more authentically to a female mind-set.
Who are you?
You are but a communication mechanism! I love saying that. In Executive Coaching, the rules for handling the process are very specific and standardized with core competencies and this is so in order to allow the client to get the most value out of the interaction, be the expert (rather than you) and tap into the far reaches of their own imagination and ideas—rather than yours. Your job is the executor of that process and it is much the same way in sales. I have two strong female entrepreneur friends who have shared a similar dilemma. They are great at what they do but uncomfortable selling themselves. It is simply too personal and feels too self-centered. Even in this scenario, they would still take on the role of process executor the moment they step into a sales scenario. Try to remember that you follow a process that is not personal. You can absolutely make it your own, use your own style and build a unique sales brand but you can always remove yourself from the equation to give you the big picture perspective. By asking yourself what phase you are in in any sales call, you immediately jump back to process owner and take yourself out of our sometimes oversensitive self-assessment as a sales person.
While you are the process owner, you are still utilizing roles to best communicate with your customers. I oftentimes feel myself stepping into a teaching role. Sometimes I am truly a project manager. Oftentimes in my industry I speak as a technical liaison or market intel rep.
Your personalized process is your framework, your obligation and your reason for being as a sales person. It is easy for people to fake being comfortable in a sales role. It is even easier for the entitled old-school sales people to actually be confortable. Let me assure you that when you have your sales process customized to meet what feels most authentic to you, you can allow the process to drive the sale and use your mental energy in more productive ways.
Read more in my upcoming book; The Authentic Sale, A Goddess’s Guide to Business.
Rena Cohen-First is a Sales Person, a Sales Director, and a Sales Coach and has succeeded in the the Food Ingredient Industry for the past 17 years, selling to market leading food and beverage manufacturers. She has taught online business and leadership classes as an Adjunct Instructor at Kentucky Wesleyan College. She studied Professional and Executive Coaching at the University of Texas, Dallas, completed her MBA at New York Institute of Technology and proudly served briefly, in the US Army (as a Russian Linguist, Private-First-Class). Her goal is to show every woman that she can become a Sales Goddess using her authentic behavioral strengths, in all circumstances. Learn more at www.thesalesgoddess.com