Many sales managers preach that a primary prerequisite to be successful in sales is that you must like people. The implication is that you should have the innate capacity and desire to cozy up to just about everybody—or at least everybody with a bankroll in their wallet. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Hear me out on this one before baling on me. I know what I am talking about.
I agree wholeheartedly that it is a wise maneuver to be civil to all people and that there is no need to be terse or impolite with anybody. I am just as quick to remind you that the quickest way to bankruptcy court is to try to be all things to all “people.” This is the shortest and quickest route to your next venture.
Here is a simple sales strategy. Realize in truth that there are only two types of people you will ever come in contact with. Just two. One. Two. Period.
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The first kind consists of those you can help. The second kind consists of the other kind. Your mission, and it is a clear and simple one, is to locate more people who are interested in your help, and then spend the majority of your waking hours devoted toward this segment.
Like it or not, endorse it or not, believe it or not, the world has its quota of nasty, insincere, and negative people. Some are just venting publically as a result of having a series of bad hair days while others seem to justify their existence by balancing out the world by exercising their option for being miserable human beings … just because they feel like it.
On the other hand, there are also plenty of fine, upstanding, fun and creative human beings running around our planet trying to figure out how things work while maintaining a healthy sense of humor. This segment exhibits a high level of emotional intelligence and they seem to appreciate the realities of life as we know it. The latter group is the one you want to be around, learn from, and even try to emulate. The first group is better off left to their own demise. As for me, I have little time nor patience to try to “fix” group #1.
So, let’s give this “you’ve got to like people” concept a different spin. If you want to minimize your stress, have more fun, and earn more money, begin by spending more time looking for and doing business with people who are honest, hard-working, fun, intelligent, enthusiastic, and easy to be around.
Where does it say you must do business with (or seek business from) everyone who wants your service or product? That’s a myth. This doesn’t mean you can be prejudiced. It simply means that it’s OK if you don’t do business with rude, unhappy, bellyaching whiners.
If you are going to expend the energy helping others, you might as well do it for people who will appreciate your efforts. By doing so, you will bring more energy and a positive attitude to the job every day. And that translates into more success.
Tomorrow I will be talking about Myth #3: The belief that rejection comes with the territory. (Don’t even think about it!)
Note: Mike addresses The Four Sales Myths along with 34 other sales career building strategies in his book titled Become The Exception. For details on how you can purchase a copy, send Mike an email at firstname.lastname@example.org