Have you ever thought about what makes good salespeople great? Consider the difference between winning the Kentucky Derby and finishing in second place. The difference between being ordinary and being extraordinary is actually quite small, especially if you work in sales.
Great salespeople smile. You may not realize this, but a simple smile acts as an attractor. Smiling immediately warms up the environment, and since smiling creates an involuntary reflex, it forces sales prospects and customers to smile too.
Great salespeople always seem to have a “can do” attitude. They don’t recognize the words “can’t” or “impossible.” Whenever they are challenged, they always figure out a way to get the job done, especially if it involves one of their customers.
They’re good listeners. They always pay close attention to their sales prospects and customers. Their eyes are like laser beams and are not easily distracted when talking with their customers.
They ask good questions. They prefer to ask open-ended questions because these questions are the best to get their prospects and customers talking.
Great salespeople are always focused on solving problems, not just making a sale. The key to making more sales is solving more problems for their prospects and customers.
They never talk too much. Talking too much often puts the brakes on building rapport and credibility. The best substitute for talking too much is asking questions and listening. Attentive listening usually means taking notes.
Great salespeople are slow to commit and quick to deliver. They seldom overpromise, which gives them the opportunity to exceed customer expectations. Overpromising is one of the quickest ways to underwhelm sales prospects and customers.
Great salespeople are always on time, which means they arrive early for all appointments. Look at it this way: Being on time means being late.
They are always enthusiastic. They love their work and are passionate about their products and services. Positive energy can be felt whenever they walk into a room. This is not something people are born with. If enthusiasm doesn’t come naturally, fake it. It’s important to becoming a great salesperson.
Great salespeople are extremely goal-oriented. They always have written objectives for every sales call. They don’t make routine sales calls because they know it’s simply a waste of valuable time.
They treat their sales prospects and customers the way they want to be treated. If the Golden Rule says you should treat people the way you want to be treated, then the “Platinum Rule” says you should treat people the way they want to be treated.
Great salespeople are grateful. They appreciate their customers’ business and will often voice their gratitude. They also appreciate the help they get from their own staff.
While the difference between good salespeople and great salespeople is not so big, there is still a difference. With a little effort, you too can become a great salesperson.
Jim Meisenheimer lives in Lakewood Ranch, Florida, and is a sales training consultant who has worked with more than 500 clients over the last two decades. He publishes the Start Selling More Newsletter (startsellingmore.com), which provides common sense sales tips and selling strategies based on practical ideas that get immediate results.