I’m no good at selling…
Do you ever tell yourself that? And when you do, what are you picturing? Sleazy doorstep sales people selling insurance, or pain in the arse cold callers dialling at 9pm when you’re all snuggled up on the sofa?
In a conversation with a client recently, we were working on her objections to selling. She was ready to make some changes in her career and was thinking longer term about going into consultancy. However, my client had decided that she wasn’t a good sales person and that this would cause some problems getting her consultancy off the ground. I know this because they were the words that came out of her mouth. That was the story she was telling herself.
So, what do you do when you have those thoughts? How do you become better at selling? Is it even possible to fall in love with selling?
Well, sometimes with clients I would go in and explore their thoughts deeper, looking at where they came from, what experiences in the past have shaped that belief. Because when it really comes down to it, it really is just a limiting belief disguised as a fact.
But something was telling me not to take this approach this time. My intuition was also telling me not to try and convince her that she was a good sales person. What I did instead was this…
I spoke from the heart. I spoke passionately about what I do, about coaching. I reminded her of her experience in her coaching consultation and I asked her about her experience. And then I said this…. In that consultation…THAT WAS YOU BEING “SOLD TO”.
She had NEVER seen it that way, she had never seen it as a sales conversation. But essentially if you want to badge it like that, it kind of is. It’s the part of the process where you meet to understand what the client’s needs are. What’s going on for them and to get an understanding of how coaching could help. Now don’t get me wrong, there are consultations that will feel pushy. In fact, I was part of a group coaching programme a while ago. I always remember being on a call with the business owner and being given this advice…
You want to take the money over the phone, if they can’t afford it you can ask them to get a credit card, if they are calling from the US there’s a company (I don’t remember the name) where they can apply and get instant approval so you can hang on the phone whilst they apply.
I decided not to be a part of that group programme after that.
When you come from a place of sincerity, of genuinely wanting to know about your customer and their needs. Of loving what you do, of really believing in your product or service being the right fit for the person in front of you. Then you can talk from the heart, you can be sincere. You can build a successful business from a place of giving.
Do what you love, care about your customers, and you won’t even realise you are selling.
A short time after that client session, I then stumbled across a podcast episode by Michael Neill (a fabulous coach) which talked about exactly this point. I sent it on to my client but I want to share it here with you too. His podcast is called Caffeine for the Soul and the episode is called “How to Fall in Love with Selling”. I’d highly recommend you take a listen as he has a very eloquent way of talking about this subject.
And once you do, go out there and find your Oliver.