by Jeffrey Gitomer
Ask anyone in sales if they consider themselves a professional and the response is an immediate YES.
But let me challenge you . . . if you were in court, in front of a judge, could you produce the evidence to prove you’re a professional salesperson?
Being in sales and being a professional sales person are miles apart. People get into sales because the income potential is unlimited. The problem is they don’t understand that to achieve their desired income, hard work at their knowledge-base of selling skills is a never-ending process. Daily effort is required to be among the best.
Here’s a list of what you would have to bring to court:
- Books about selling, negotiating, positive attitude, and psychology from your library.
- Sales tapes from your office and car.
- Video tapes about selling, famous sales lectures from your training room or living room.
- Ticket stubs from sales seminars you attended.
- Certificates on your wall from completed sales training programs.
- Magazines and newsletters you subscribe to that focus on sales and sales techniques.
- Some sales award you won for being first, best, highest something.
How much evidence do you have? If the answer is “not enough to convict you,” develop a written program for yourself, and follow it.
Read, watch, and listen . . . No, it’s not “look out for the locomotive,” it’s the best way to learn new selling techniques. Read books, watch videos, and listen to tapes. If you’re serious about the science of selling, you have no choice but to learn (if you want to earn).
Learn something new about sales or your attitude every day . . . Pop a training or motivational tape into your car or home stereo (or both), instead of listening to the same old news. Try to feed your head with new knowledge that will help you make that next sale.
Cash Coyne, owner of the Audio Library, where you can rent books on tapes and training tapes, says, “My customers tell me they enjoy rush hour traffic now; and on a drive to the beach or mountains you can almost listen to an entire training course.”
Want to become an expert in sales? Learning one new technique per day = 220 new techniques per year. If you sell for 5 years you’ll have over 1,000 techniques at your disposal. Amazing what you can do if you just do something small every day. If you just dedicate 15-30 minutes a day to learning something new about sales and achieving a positive attitude, at the end of five years you will be a master salesperson and have a great attitude about life.
Practice on a prospect . . . It is especially effective to learn a new technique in the car, and immediately try it out on your next appointment.
Once you start the learning process, don’t stop. If you gain a little knowledge, and begin to think and sound like you know everything, you develop the kind of attitude that is destined to fail.
Continuing education also breeds continuing humility. Look at knowledgeable people with positive attitudes; they are almost always humble.
Learning just one new technique per day . . .that’s 220 new techniques per year. If you sell for 5 years, you’ll have over 1,000 techniques at your disposal.
© 2006 All Rights Reserved – Don’t even think about reproducing this document without written permission from Jeffrey H. Gitomer and Buy Gitomer.
Jeffrey Gitomer is the author of The Little Red Book of Selling and The Little Red Book of Sales Answers. President of Charlotte-based Buy Gitomer, he gives seminars, runs annual sales meetings, and conducts Internet training programs on sales and customer service at www.trainone.com. He can be reached at 704/333-1112 or e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.