If there is one common dominator in sales success; one approach which is so foolproof that is should be etched in marble monuments and made the first thing anyone learns before even thinking about becoming a professional salesperson, it is the sentence below. Are you ready to learn THE BIG SECRET, the one which top sales training companies should be teaching if they aren’t already?
Here it is:
The best way to more sales is to genuinely help others.
Now, don’t mistake this for some naïve, Utopian dream where everyone helps everybody else for free and nobody makes any money. Being broke never helped anyone. But it does mean that the primary motivation should never be just a commission check — something I see too often in salespeople who eventually fail.
How Salespeople Can “Help” Their Way to More Sales
Steve Hirsch from Trusted Advisor Associates puts it nicely in this blog post when he says, “Helping means finding ways to assist the other person to identify, analyze and resolve his or her problem. If that process results in a need for your services, that outcome will emerge.”
You could look at it this way: all that is taught by top sales training companies regarding marketing, prospecting, handling objections, and closing isn’t there to help you manipulate your way to a paycheck, but is instead a way to discover how best to help people using your product or service, and remove the barriers to them getting it.
This is powerful stuff. Following this philosophy means that if you know your product or service will genuinely help, and is not just a means for you to make money at the expense of others, you can persuade others to buy it with a clean conscience. You will fight for the sale, because you are in reality fighting for the customer. And what do you think happens once you have helped someone solve a personal or business pain in this way? They will tell others, and business grows organically.
The effectiveness of this approach has been proven with some solid research by Adam Grant of the Wharton School, who has published his findings in a book on organizational psychology called “Give and Take.” In a recent New York Times article about him, perhaps his most salient quote is: “Focusing on the contribution of our work to other people’s lives has the potential to make us more productive than thinking about helping ourselves.”
I see this every day in running my own business and in observing other top sales training companies who are committed to helping their clients make more money. Trust me, it works.
The Three Things People Really Want
When you really boil it down, this is what people want:
- To reach one or more self-determined goals
- To fulfill their core values
- To improve the quality of their lives
Find a way to help those you encounter achieve these desires with your product or service, and you have discovered true selling power.
I hope this helps you to look upon what you do with a new perspective, and that you use it to achieve greater sales success.