Part 2: “Sympathy for the Devil”
In Part 1 of this series, I gave you some facts about the Rolling Stones and how “Rolling Stones, Inc.” has been delivering “off the Billboard chart” results to their customers for more than five decades. In Part 2 of this series, I am focusing on the song that was placed at No. 32 by Rolling Stone Magazine on their list of Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Songs of All Time, and discussing the sales lessons we can learn from this hit.
“Please allow me to introduce myself … I’m a man of wealth and taste …” – Sympathy for the Devil – Beggar’s Banquet, 1968.
Have you ever heard someone say that “dealing with a salesperson is like dealing with the Devil?!” Or, what about, “he could sell ice to an Eskimo;” or, “he’s selling snake oil?” All of these clichés, imply one thing – salespeople have some magical power to hypnotize or coerce someone into buying something that they really don’t want or need.
How does this perspective affect one’s ability to be successful in sales? As humans, our beliefs and values are usually established by the messages that are sent to us. So, whether it’s intentional not, our personal viewpoint of selling can affect our own success.
As salespeople, what can we do to ensure that our values and belief systems align with our chosen career? You start by asking yourself the following questions:
- Why did I go into sales? Was it the only job I could get out of college? Does my family history lay claim to generations of successful salespeople? Is it what everyone assumed I would do? Or, did I find that I relished in the competitive atmosphere of a sales team and truly enjoyed meeting potential customers and clients and finding the right solution or product to help them?
- What was my motivation? The almighty dollar? Success? The admiration of my peers? The gratitude of a customer? The answers to this question can be both positive and negative. What is the true source of your motivation?
- Who do you know who has had a successful career in sales? Do you like this person? Do your values align with this individual?
- And finally, how do you view sales? Are you doing something for someone or to someone?
Successful sales executives have a healthy personal and professional view of sales. It is true that they can often quickly point to family members or role models who have experienced very successful sales careers. However, whether you come from a long lineage of sales success or not, the best and most successful salespeople recognize that sales is all about helping their customers or clients solve problems to foster the growth of their businesses. Top salespeople ask questions to uncover core issues, then they ask more questions – ultimately finding the best solution for their customers.
In Part 3 of this eight-part series, we’ll examine how Activity vs. Productivity can help drive the outcomes you are looking for, getting you more “sales satisfaction.” Stay tuned for Part 3 …