Most of us need to sell something, at sometime, in our lives. Be it an interview for a job, a cause on some committee, the raising of a child, or the wooing a potential mate, sales is skill that has value for all. This a guest post by Amy Putkonen, who regularly writes about how to apply the Tao Te Ching to daily life. She has kindly shared her thoughts regarding the intersection of sales and leadership.
Sales is a dance between you and your client.
Everyone wants to be recognized. In Chapter 17 of the Tao Te Ching (http:// taotechingdaily.com/chapter-17-essay-tao-te-ching/), Lao Tzu says that the greatest leader is the one that is least known. A great leader knows that people just want to be recognized and so they help people to recognize their own accomplishments. When leading is done well, people do not feel that they have been led. They feel that they have created their own accomplishments. This is the natural way.
A great salesperson does this for people, too.
With sales, it is better if the interest in your product comes from within your client. But how can you help to trigger that interest? What is it about your product or your service that the person finds captivating? Do your clients desire your products because they will be helped in some way?
When you have accomplished this desire, sales is a moot point. In your client’s mind, they have already bought your product. There is no need to “sell” them on the idea. At this point, sales is more about just closing the deal.
The deeper this desire goes, the better.
What is your company vision? What is it that you are really trying to do for people? If the quality of this vision can make the hair stand up on your arms, then you know you’ve got something! There is a richness that people are craving from business these days.
People want authenticity.
People want their products to mean something. Every day, we are inundated with meaningless junk. How does what you are offering stand above all of that? Is it just more junk or is there something that you can give that will change people’s lives in some way?
You can’t fake authenticity.
It can’t be over-emphasized. If your desire to help people is not authentic, people can sense it. You want your message to be very clear. You are here to help people change their lives. When that message is consistent and strong and does not falter, that is what you are going for. When people start to see your message, when they start to recognize that message is also what they want, they will get behind you on that.
Your message will become their own.
When your idea becomes their own, that’s when it is really powerful. If you can be a leader in your cause, whatever that cause happens to be, you’ve got people generating a cause on their own.
That’s when you know you really have something.
Amy Putkonen writes regularly about the Tao Te Ching at her blog, Tao Te Ching Daily. She challenges you to reflect on Taoist principles in real life situations and see where it takes you. Stop by and say hello!