Sales is hard enough without voluntarily making it more difficult than it has to be. In today’s message, I am going to share with you four myths usually connected with the selling profession… and what you can do about them.
Myth #1: The belief that selling is simply a number’s game.
This implies that if you do enough “stuff,” call enough people, write enough letters, make enough appointments, send enough postcards, or return enough phone calls you will be rewarded handsomely for your efforts.
I am not disagreeing that if you throw enough marbles into the air, one or two will land in the cup situated ten feet away. There is some interesting data supporting The Law of Numbers.
However, this does not take into consideration that you only have 50- 60 years left to get this sales-thing right. Playing by the numbers is another way for going to market by “spraying and praying.” The invention of the Internet and Google are largely responsible for altering yesterday’s selling processes.
Today I prefer to think of sales as a game of darts. Once you have designated a “logical” target board to direct your efforts (darts), the chances of hitting a bulls-eye are dramatically improved. Selling, my friends, has morphed into a game of darts. Point. Aim. Toss. Adjust. Toss. Adjust. Toss.
Myth #2: You must become comfortable with being rejected as it comes with the territory.
The old popular warning is, “In sales, you will be receiving more “no’s” than “yes’s. Get jiggy with it”—or something like that. My friends, if you spend three milliseconds bemoaning the fact that you have been “rejected,” it is my professional opinion that you just wasted three milliseconds of your life.
Repeat after me: “IT IS NOT ABOUT ME.”
Stop flattering yourself thinking that people rejected you. People don’t give a hoot about you. They don’t have time, inclination or reason to reject you. They have decided not to purchase the service or product based on any one of a thousand reasons. And if you do happen to be one of those reasons, it is probably number 957 or higher.
If, for some reason, you do feel rejected after a sale goes south, and you have professionally said and done everything you could have said or done, I want you to say the only two words that make sense at times like these: “WHO’S NEXT?”
Myth #3: Selling is a stressful career.
Stress is only a “given” if you insist on pretending that the world works differently than the world works. That’s exactly the time when stress enters your life. As soon as you realize that you are living in an imperfect world and are playing on an often-times unfair game board, you will exhibit what I refer to as Emotional Intelligence. That is when much, if not all, of your self-inflicted stress will be minimized.
Stress is self-inflicted, my friends, more often than not. Learn to see the world as it really is. And when betting between you and the world, the smart money is going to be on the world.
Myth #4: To be successful in sales you must like people.
Fasten your seatbelts, because what I am about to tell you may rock your boat. “I have been in sales since 1975 and, as a general across the board statement, I don’t like people.”
How does that make you feel? Allow me to explain.
The “I like people” card is far too wishy-washy for my liking. Reason being, I have been around the bases more than once, and I have come across some pretty nasty, difficult, boring, obnoxious, rude, dishonest, manipulative, negatively-aggressive individuals. I say with all sincerity, I DON’T LIKE THESE SLUGS.
You say: “But, Mike, you are a professional salesman and you are supposed to like people. These people are people.”
My polite response: “Yes. These people are people. But they are also slugs. I don’t like slugs. I have no time for slugs. I choose to have nothing to do with slugs. I won’t work with slugs.”
Haven’t we instructed our children that they will be judged by the company they keep? If this is true, you too will be judged by the clients you work with. If you work with, and happen to enjoy the attributes of, less-than-squared away people, what does that say about you? Are you feeling me yet?
Nobody ever said you must do business with everybody. I don’t like people. I like the people I like. And not only do these people get my attention, they get my undivided attention coupled with all my energy, enthusiasm, creativity and effort.
Just as it makes sense to “pick your battles” it makes perfect sense to “pick your customers.” My recommendation is to pick the people you like.
Mike Marchev is always looking for a few more proactive travel professionals to join his Sales and Marketing Club. firstname.lastname@example.org.
*** You want more to think about? Check out my weekly podcast (Mike’d Up Marchev). Also listed on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google, and iHeartRadio.