If it's flipping hamburgers at McDonald's, be the best hamburger flipper in the world. Whatever it is you do you have to master your craft.
I failed chemistry in college. Before you judge, I made it through five levels of Calculus. Math is logical and progressive – chemistry is hit or miss. A little of this, a little of that –Why do you think they have to wear goggles?
Much of sales is a science of sorts – a little of this, a little of that to make the process work. Much of it is an art – idiosyncratic – the snowflake and fingerprint of individual character and personality. I have hired over five hundred directly employed salespeople in my corporate career and have been a trainer to 10’s of 1,000’s. There is no math equation that will tell you who will succeed.
Thank goodness, or else all salespeople would act the same, look the same, and sell the same. Diversity of operation means we all have a fighting chance to make it in this business. A shy former high school teacher can do as well as the brash former higher school quarterback. I have spent some time pondering the conundrum that is salespeople.
What if I could create the ultimate salesperson?
The Frankenstein of sales (ok, the mad scientist’s name was Frankenstein, but it is cooler than saying “monster”!) . An amalgamation of gifts and talents, all taken from the best the profession has to offer. A seven-figure model of revenue generating possibility.
What would they look like?
To begin, they would be a blend of the science and art of selling.
Science of selling: These are the things we all must do to be successful – they are process focused activities. They can usually be measured (quantitative) and will work along predicable lines for an industry. Science will tell a CFO that if there are 1 million prospects, how many of them will buy and generate a certain amount of revenue. That defines how many salespeople they need and that is where your quota comes from!
Science is about the process of finding that client and converting them into revenue for the company. From the salesperson’s perspective, that sales process would include:
- Building Rapport
- Demonstrating Value
- Handling Objections
- Post Sales activities.
No one can escape these basic elements.
The Art of selling can be summed up in one word – style (qualitative). In the classic Kung Fu movie, Enter the Dragon, a man from New Zealand asks Bruce Lee, “What’s your fighting style?”
Bruce answers (man, he was cool!) , “The art of fighting…without fighting.”
What is your selling style? Laid back, hard charging, focused, persistence, consultative? Remember I asked you the other day if you would hire yourself?
As we look at some characteristics, gifts, and abilities of top salespeople, review them against your own. We will look at them at a high-level overview. Then we will come back and work on developing the areas where you may need improvement. Ultimately, there are many ways to “skin the sales cat,” but we are going to look at what I think is the best way (after all, this is my blog!) over the next few sessions as I play…
The Mad Scientist!