The answer to this question is relative – and largely rests with you. Using, yet again, another sporting analogy – to many who don’t play, golf is difficult. Hitting a white ball some hundred metres in to a tiny hole 18 times is frustrating. Why? It is hard because we don’t take the time to make it easier. Then, of course, a professional golfer will tell you it’s hard as well! Why? Their view of it has changed. They wish to hit the green from 200m out and have a 1 putt opportunity as a significant pay check rides on it.
Now to sales, is this hard? We all know how to talk to people to varying degrees, we can all pick up a phone and have a conversation. We should all be technically adept enough at our roles to discuss what our business does and how it helps a client.
So why is selling viewed as hard? Is it ringing the client? Is it the first meeting? Is it following them up? Is it pitching your offer? Is it closing the deal?
More often than not it’s YOU! Like the golfer, you just aren’t doing it enough to be comfortable with doing it. You over think it – like a golf swing – rather than doing it.
You can all use a phone, carry a conversation and, hopefully, explore a clients position enough to see where you can add value – this is, in essence, sales. How hard is that?
Much of it comes down two 2 things
- A fear of failure: People don’t like hearing ‘No’ – it implies failure through rejection. So, of course, it is easier to not put ourselves in the position where this could occur. In sales, this means we choose the path of least resistence – those who we think will never say no. A great example of this is meeting with intermediaries/rainmakers. Do you actually outright ask them ‘is their anyone you can introduce me to?’. Often, not, but we have a coffee with them, make small talk and hope this statement is inferred and they’re just throw us some names without asking
- A desire for failure: Some people actually do the process, but poorly or uncommittedly so they fail. This then proves their internal view that it was a pointless exercise. You see this at work when people say ‘my clients won’t like this’ and then, lo and behold, after they’ve spoken with their client, the client doesn’t like it. Yet other managers have no issue. Any cyclist/skier etc will tell you, you look to torwards where you want to go, not where you don’t…sales is no different, a focus on failure rather than success will likely bear it true.
Sure, in sales you don’t always win. Sometimes timing is off, or another competitor is sharper or a client just doesn’t make a decision to change. However, by not calling that client you are making the decision for them. You are choosing to not play that shot. Worse, you could be calling the client believing it won’t work.
Sales isn’t difficult – though it does require effort and tenancity. Does a professional golfer not aim to land the ball 10′ from the pin when 200 out because there’s water in the way? Or do they hit the water to prove it was a silly shot? No, they trust themselves and aim for the pin. So should you!