December 2019 E-Connect Daily
‘C.A.P.’ it — Another sales acronym you can use
By John Waid
Don’t you wish you felt like someone wasn’t trying to sell you something all the time? Wouldn’t it be nice if the salesperson was really on your side and wanted you to be happy with whatever it was you purchased? I mean, can you imagine a world like that?
The best salespeople do not simply adhere to acronyms like ABC—Always Be Closing—or the X-step processes that remove the humanity from sales interactions. The majority of selling is not technique, but plain old people skills.
When people are asked what makes for a great salesperson, they will often cite characteristics like listening, asking great questions, caring more about the buyer than themselves, building rapport and being liked as people, handling objections well and shutting up. These are all behaviors that can be found in the three values every great salesperson must possess.
Let’s dispel the myth of what selling is. Most salespeople will tell you they sold something and yet, if you think about it, they did not sell anything without someone buying. Selling is not the action, so really, salespeople could be called facilitators of buying.
“To sell” sounds aggressive and can put you in a defensive position. The inherent “tricks of the sales trade” often leave buyers with a sour taste in their mouths. There is a better methodology that goes to the core of why we sell in the first place—and it is one that is not financially-driven. Believing in and selling a product or service that can improve an aspect of a buyer’s life should be the primary motivator for salespeople. It is much better than selling just to hit a sales target or benchmark.
Once you establish a purpose aside from financial gain, there are three distinct values and some adjoining behaviors that drive the best salespeople. The acronym C.A.P. is easy to remember. Try it.
Are you curious? Curiosity is the value that drives the best to want to know what is behind the reason people buy something. Why do some salespeople create rabid fans around their products and services when others do not? It is because these salespeople add value. Developing an attitude of curiosity to help build value for the customer along with the two key behaviors of great open questions and listening can lead you to enjoy selling.
Don’t cut corners. Do all the right things. Accountability is an attitude that exudes success. Think about how much better you could have done in school if you had prepared before each quiz or exam, finished reading and taking notes on every textbook, and gone to every class and asked for help when you did not know something. Have you ever tried to build a piece of furniture without first reading the instructions? Painful isn’t it? The best salespeople prepare in writing and are meticulous about preparing their territory plans, target accounts, their positive mental attitude, materials, open questions, objection handling, etc. Preparation is 90 percent of success and if you fail to prepare, prepare to fail.
Is it more important that you like the customer or that the customer likes you? Before you answer, think about it a bit. How is the customer going to like you if you do not like them? Having a positive mental attitude and deciding to like everyone for something is something that is not only great in sales, but also in life. We spend much of our time interacting with people and if we do not do this well it can cause a lot of heartache. Many of the most successful salespeople create rapport and learn to mirror the behaviors of others for better understanding of them and themselves. The ability to create likeability is the first step in creating “trustability.” Helping people to buy is not easy when they do not like you.
So there you have it. These three values and the adjoining behaviors are key to sales and even make for a better life. Put on your sales C.A.P. daily and you’ll begin to see a boost in relationships, a boost in your numbers, and a boost in your satisfaction as a salesperson.
John Waid is the founder of C-3 Corporate Culture Consulting, a keynote speaker and author of the book, "Reinventing Ralph." For more information on John Waid, please visit: www.CorporateCultureConsulting.com.
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