Thursday, December 17, 2009

The GUTS for sales?

Do you have the guts to do sales? Most engineer-types would say "yes", but feel "HELL NO". They'd probably claim its not adding value, boring, or beneath their skills. They are dead wrong. An engineer with the guts to go into sales has the sky as his limit. However, here are the fears you have to somehow, overcome.

  1. Rejection: this is a major one for engineers, and why so many of them propose so few truly new ideas. In sales, rejection is continuous until you get the check.
  2. Slime: many people think sales is a slimy business... rife with kickbacks and bribes... they are "thank goodness" dead wrong. People who rely on this went out of style with "The Godfather" (great movie, but far from reality today).
  3. Cold Calling: calling people is not fun, especially for engineer types or managers who constantly get cold called and hate it. Honestly, I'm stuck here.... I HATE cold calling, and flatly refuse to do it... I'm always wondering if it is hurting me: but in the world of Email, why can't we arrange a time to talk in advance????
  4. Pitching: Many engineer-types think pitching a product and "selling" means lying or being deceitful... if so, you should STOP watching Godfather, and instead pick up a copy of the book: "SPIN Selling".. which actually is not about "spinning at all" but asking questions to help determine IF your product has value to the client... if it doesn't, MOVE ON!
  5. Closing: funny, many engineer-types (myself included) probably think this means "getting to yes". I'm starting to learn though: closing is getting to "yes or no", then moving on when appropriate. In high-tech, getting a "no" is as hard as getting a "yes"... in both cases, the hard part is asking for it!

Here are a few that you'll worry about once you get here:
  1. Feeling worthless: since you're not 'making anything', or 'desiging anything' ... and it feels like you're "closing" very little (unless you count the 'nos'... which you should)... you'll feel like a lot of work for very little result. Trick is to remember, every deal has a "life-time value", not just the current sale.
  2. Lack of forward progress: similarly, since you're probably not counting 'nos' as successes (you should), you'll feel like your never getting anywhere. By the way, most clients will not say "yes" or "no"... which is even more frustrating!

Here's the solution.. READ A BOOK OR 2 on SALES!

Its funny, so few sales-people are reading sales-books... and so many are writing them!

Pick up a book!!!!

Here are a few I really enjoyed:
SPIN Selling
Sales Bible
Its Not Luck

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