By Lindsey Tolino
Sales gets a bad rap. ItÂs kind of earned it.
WeÂve all experienced pushy sales people – ones who didnÂt listen, ones who weren’t trying to serve you, ones who were trying to pushing you to buy so they’d get their commission.
ItÂs off-putting to say the least.
WeÂve gotten sales really backward. It shouldnÂt be a pushy job. It shouldnÂt be dominated by sales peopleÂs self-interest.
Sales should actually be quite the opposite: Sales should be a position of servanthood.
Yes, you may be responsible to make certain quotas. But your job isnÂt to sell indiscriminately to hit quotas. Your job is to serve people.
Your job is to serve people by finding those who need your product, serve them by informing them about your product, serve them by respecting their decision to buy or not buy your product, and serve them being a resource after they decide to buy or not buy your product.
Things get all messed up in sales when you put your interests first. Potential customers can tell if youÂre selling just to make money. ItÂs incredibly unattractive. Not only that, you create way more work for yourself than you need to.
You know itÂs better to have solid, consistent relationships with your customers than to be scrambling to find new prospects because youÂve treated past customers transactionally.
Yet, we tend toward transaction. Why? Why would we sell ourselves short of a solid relationship for a quick, one-time transaction?
ItÂs ultimately not because weÂre selfish. ItÂs ultimately because weÂre fearful. We donÂt trust the process. We fear that we may not have enough for ourselves. So we go out and try to make a quick sale to take care of ourselves, instead of trying to serve others. Our scarcity mindset pushes us toward putting our own interests above othersÂ.
Let me explain. If you put a small pile of food in a field and release a bunch of dogs that havenÂt eaten in a week, thereÂs likely going to be fighting over the food.
But, if I take away the food bowl from my pit bull while sheÂs eating, she wonÂt become aggressive or fight me. SheÂs still interested in it. She wants it back. But she trusts me. SheÂs fed twice a day without fail. She knows IÂll give her food, even if I have to take it back for a moment because I forgot to put her medicine in it.
The first set of dogs have been conditioned into a scarcity mindset. My dog hasnÂt. The great news is, weÂre not dogs. We may have been conditioned into a scarcity mindset, but we can refuse to keep that mindset any longer.
We know that serving people is better for them and better for us in the long run. We can choose to sell to people out of a desire to serve them excellently and not out of our own self-interests. When we choose that, we create more sustainable relationships with the people we serve, which benefits us as well.
Refuse a scarcity mindset. Sell out of a desire to serve others. ItÂs better for all of us.
Image info: Royalty-free image by Mark Brannan. (http://www.freeimages.com/photo/622720)