Most sales professionals know that prospecting is the key to success in their profession. Many sales people know and understand this, but still fail to make the prospecting calls that can virtually guarantee their success. I believe that most sales people don’t call on enough new prospects because they lack the confidence. Prospecting isn’t the key to success, confidence is. A lack of success for sales people doesn’t just come from a lack of confidence in the product, it stems from a lack of confidence in themselves.
Increase your confidence and you will increase your sales. Increase your confidence and you will never have a shortage of new prospects to call on again. A confident person is a magnet for attraction. A sales superstar is confident and values this confidence above all things. Confidence is your greatest asset.
Protect it like it’s your fortune – it is – because if you’re not confident, nothing else matters.
Now I’ve shared with you that confidence, or a lack of it, is the biggest challenge facing sales people. Diagnosing the problem is easy; but let me provide you with one powerful tool to overcome it.
Questions = Confidence
Why is it important to ask questions during your client meetings? The quality of your questions determines the quality of the relationship. The wisdom of your questions actually shows the depth of your understanding of a clients’ situation or problem. How much confidence do you think you acquire in recommending the best possible solution when you fully understand your clients’ challenges and needs? Your clients appreciate and understand how perceptive and conscientious you are. This builds trust and shows that you care. Increase your confidence, increase your sales.
My advice to sales students is to make a big paradigm shift that immediately improves your power to influence – shift from selling to questioning. But, what has this got to do with confidence I hear you saying? It’s quite simple – the person who asks the questions is in control of the meeting. The person who asks the questions subtly manages the agenda. The sales person who asks the questions guides the client in the definite direction that the client’s answers are leading them. How stress-free is that?
The point is that when you ask the right questions you give your client the opportunity to buy rather than be sold. A massive difference!
There are many other ways to build and improve confidence in sales, but I find that the ultimate key to building success is linked to your ability to ask relevant questions that guide you to the client’s precise needs, desires and outcomes. You immediately rise above the role of mere sales person; you become the trusted and expert advisor.
This is a position of influence, strength and trust. This is a position of confidence.
“High expectations are the key to everything.” – Sam Walton
John Lloyd is a business growth strategist, award-winning marketer, speaker, trainer, columnist and author of the book Smart Thinking for Crazy Times.
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