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10 Sales Skills Everyone Should Master To Be Successful

10 Sales Skills Everyone Should Master To Be Successful

What comes into your mind when hearing words ‘sales skills’? Some people connect these words with manipulation, chasing people on the streets and being able to talk like a machine gun. These images are just the opposite of what good sales skills are all about.

The fact is that mastering sales skills is an essential part of being successful in any area of your life: as an artist or as a computer programmer, at your office when you present a new idea to your colleagues, as a business owner or even when planning a new holiday destination with your family. If you look at sales skills from the right angle, your success is on the way!

To start with: we all have practiced some good sales skills (and not even thinking about them!) at one time in our life. Remember when you were a kid. How many ways have you invented to persuade your parents to buy you ice-cream? Or in your teens, you met a girl or a boy of your dreams. What have you done? You tried to convince her or him that your love is a true one and that you are the best choice for her or him. And (hopefully) you meant it from all your heart.

So, we are all born with some good sales skills! To help you out to be even more successful in any area of your life, here are 10 sales skills which can improve your daily life.

1. Be a good listener

Contrary to popular opinion people with good sales skills listen very carefully. They know that we have two ears and only one mouth, so that there is a good reason to listen more than talk.

When listening, be an active listener, be interested in what people have to say. When you propose an idea at your job or in your family, listen carefully what objectives people around you have. Only then, you will be able to find the right answers for them and be successful in promoting your idea.

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2. Find a way to connect

Successful salespeople are masters in connecting with other people.

The next time you talk to a person observe the way he or she talks. If the person speaks slowly, you should slow down your speech, too. Why? Because similarities connect people.

Find out what the person likes, what hobbies they have. Does the person have a dog? If you have a dog, too then there is plenty to talk about and the connection just gets stronger.

3. Think of giving value first

If you want to empower your life with good sales skills don’t think of selling. Think of giving value first and the money or success will be a by-product. We all like people who bring value to our lives and dislike people who just want to sell.

Be resourceful, make suggestions for improving the workflow at your office or your business, try to find ways to improve other people’s lives and you will become successful.

4. Be passionate

Sales people or business owners who are passionate about their products or what they do don’t even think that much about their sales skills. They simply do it because they think it is right. When shareholders tried to press on Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO for greater profits, he simply replied:

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”I don’t even care about ROI (Return On Investment). We, here at Apple do it in the way we do simply because we think it is right and good!”

Find your passion, find what you like to do, (think of what you would do even if you are not paid for it) and your passion will drive you through every obstacle on the way to your success.

5. Picture your end result

Successful salespeople always see their customers being fully satisfied with the service they offer. They see how grateful people are after buying their products. They see the end results even before they start selling. They always have these images in their minds.

Make a habit to picture the end result for everything you want in your life. Even when you don’t have the slightest idea how you are going to make it, visualize your end result. Picture yourself driving your new car, sipping a nice, tasty coffee on a balcony of your new apartment or signing a new contract in your office as a successful business owner. Having the image of your desired thing always in your mind will help you to find ways you can’t see right now.

6. Don’t take it personally

One of the hardest sales skills to learn is how to deal with rejections. Jean Paul DeJoria, the co-founder of Jean Mitchel Systems and founder of Patron Tequila said:

“When 100 doors are slammed in your face, go to the door number 101 and be just as enthusiastic as you were at the beginning.”

How to do that? Just don’t take a rejection personally and go on. If some people say “no” to your idea or proposal, they are maybe just not prepared for it, right now. But don’t allow this to doubt in yourself. Believe in yourself and find people who will support your ideas.

You have to remember that successful people do things unsuccessful people try to avoid in any possible way.

7. Find out what people really need

Even if you have exceptional sales skills, you would have hard times selling a bottle of water someone in the nice Alpine village. But offer this same bottle of water to a thirsty group of tourists lost in the middle of a Sahara desert, you really shouldn’t have any struggle.

Take time and find out what people need in your town or anywhere in the world (thanks to the Internet you can offer your solutions just anywhere). For example, if you are a yoga teacher, there are many people who have backache problems because they sit for long hours so try to think of how to offer your service in their offices, when they have a break. There are many people who want to learn marketing skills and you might already have these skills. So look around for the needs first and then figure out ways for solutions.

8. Keep eye contact

Keeping eye contact is one of those tiny, small but very important sales skills which show a prospect you really care about him or her. Successful people know that avoiding eye contact is a sign of insecurity or unappreciation.

The next time you speak with your boss or your customer look calmly in their eyes (just don’t stare at them like you are in trance) because with natural eye contact, even when you don’t talk you are silently telling: “I listen to you and I care for you.”

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9. Do the best follow up

One of the most efficient sales skills for bringing referrals in is a great follow-up. How good would you feel if you enroll in a fitness program and the next day a fitness instructor calls you asking how you feel after your first workout day? People who do great follow-ups know they can win customers for life.

So, if you want to be successful make sure you take great care for people around you. If you helped someone at your office with a problem a week ago, ask him how he is doing now, what his progress is. If you own a business, pick up the phone today and ask your customers how they are doing with your product.

10. People buy you first

Even if you master all the selling skills in this planet if you don’t have a good, caring personality, nothing will really work. You have to remember that people buy you first and only then your products, which means that they have to trust and like you first.

Work regularly on yourself, read motivational books every day, watch videos on YouTube which motivate you. In this way, you will become a strong personality which is the great foundation for your success.

Mastering sales skills is basically the art of mastering relationships with people around you. To be successful in your life, work every day on slight improvements on every of these sales skills, and the compound effect of slight improvements will be shown in the better quality of your life very soon.

Featured photo credit: retro girl wearing sunglasses with lemonade stand via shutterstock.com

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Last Updated on July 16, 2019

6 Effective Ways to Enhance Your Problem Solving Skills

6 Effective Ways to Enhance Your Problem Solving Skills

Have you ever thought of yourself as a problem solver? I’m guessing not. But in reality, we are constantly solving problems. And the better our problem solving skills are, the easier our lives are.

Problems arise in many shapes and forms. They can be mundane, everyday problems, or larger more complex problems:

What to have for dinner tonight?

Which route to take to work?

How to fix a project that’s running behind schedule?

How to change from an uninspiring job to a career you’re really passionate about?

Every day, you’ll be faced with at least one problem to solve. But it gets easier when you realize that problems are simply choices. There’s nothing ‘scary’ about them other than having to make a decision.

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No matter what job you’re in, where you live, who your partner is, how many friends you have, you will be judged on your ability to solve problems. Because problems equal hassles for everyone concerned. And people don’t like hassle. So the more problems you can solve, the less hassle all-round, the happier people are with you. Everyone wins.

Why Are Problem Solving Skills Important?

Problem is something hard to understand or accomplish or deal with. It can be a task, a situation, or even a person. Problem solving involves methods and skills to find the best solutions to problems.

Problem solving is important because we all have decisions to make, and questions to answer in our lives. Amazing people like Eleanor Roosevelt, Steve Jobs, Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr., are all great problems solvers. Good parents, teachers, doctors and waiters all have to be good at solving different sort of problems as well.

Problem solving skills are for our everyday lives.

How to Enhance Problem Solving Skills

Most people believe that you have to be very intelligent in order to be a good problem solver, but that’s not true.

You don’t have to be super smart to be a problem solver, you just need practice.

When you understand the different steps to solve a problem, you’ll be able to come up with great solutions.

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1. Focus on the Solution, Not the Problem

Neuroscientists have proven that your brain cannot find solutions if you focus on the problem.[1] This is because when you focus on the problem, you’re effectively feeding ‘negativity,’ which in turn activates negative emotions in the brain. These emotions block potential solutions.

I’m not saying you should ‘ignore the problem,’ instead, try to remain calm. It helps to first, acknowledge the problem; and then, move your focus to a solution-oriented mindset where you keep fixed on what the ‘answer’ could be, rather than lingering on ‘what went wrong’ and ‘who’s fault it is’.

2. Adapt 5 Whys to Clearly Define the Problem

5 Whys is a problem solving framework to help you get to the root of a problem.

By repeatedly asking the question “why” on a problem, you can dig into the root cause of a problem, and that’s how you can find the best solution to tackle the root problem once and for all. And it can go deeper than just asking why for five times.

For example:

If the problem is “always late to work”…

  • Why am I late to work?
    I always click the snooze button and just want to go on sleeping.
  • Why do I want to go on sleeping?
    I feel so tired in the morning.
  • Why do I feel tired in the morning?
    I slept late the night before, that’s why.
  • Why did I sleep late?
    I wasn’t sleepy after drinking coffee, and I just kept scrolling my Facebook feed and somehow I couldn’t stop.
  • Why did I drink coffee?
    Because I was too sleepy at work in the afternoon, not having enough sleep the night before.

So there you see, if you didn’t try to dig out the root of the problem, you may just set a few more alarms and have it beep every five minutes in the morning. But in fact, the problem you need to solve is to quit Facebook surfing endlessly at night so you’ll feel more energetic in the day time, and you won’t even need coffee.

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3. Simplify Things

As human beings, we have a tendency to make things more complicated than they need to be! Try simplifying your problem by generalizing it.

Remove all the details and go back to the basics. Try looking for a really easy, obvious solution – you might be surprised at the results! And we all know that it’s often the simple things that are the most productive.

4. List out as Many Solutions as Possible

Try to come up with ‘ALL POSSIBLE SOLUTIONS’ – even if they seem ridiculous at first. It’s important you keep an open mind to boost creative thinking, which can trigger potential solutions.

Coming from 10 years in the corporate advertising industry, it is drummed into you that ‘No idea is a bad idea’ and this aids creative thinking in brainstorms and other problem-solving techniques.

Whatever you do, do not ridicule yourself for coming up with ‘stupid solutions’ as it’s often the crazy ideas that trigger other more viable solutions.

5. Think Laterally

Change the ‘direction’ of your thoughts by thinking laterally. Pay attention to the saying,

‘You cannot dig a hole in a different place by digging it deeper.”

Try to change your approach and look at things in a new way. You can try flipping your objective around and looking for a solution that is the polar opposite!

Even if it feels silly, a fresh and unique approach usually stimulates a fresh solution.

6. Use Language That Creates Possibility

Lead your thinking with phrases like ‘what if…’ and ‘imagine if…’ These terms open up our brains to think creatively and encourage solutions.

Avoid closed, negative language such as ‘I don’t think…’ or ‘But this is not right…’.

The Bottom Line

There’s nothing scary about a problem when you start to adapt my advice.

Try not to view problems as ‘scary’ things! If you think about what a problem really is, it’s really just feedback on your current situation.

Every problem is telling you that something is not currently working and that you need to find a new way around it.

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So try to approach problems neutrally – without any judgment. Practice focusing on defining a problem, keep calm and not to make things too complicated.

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Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Planet of Success: Problem vs Solution Focused Thinking

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