Harnessing Your Inner Used Car Salesman

By: dwoffice
The highest achievers in sales often are those who have mastered tight rope walking. Now, of course, I don't mean literally tight rope walking! However, the best salespeople are those who can reach the perfect balance between empathy and genuine interest in the customer and having that killer instinct.

I've often found myself a little too focused on the former. I've always loved being in sales because of the interaction with people and the ability to actually to try and help them. I know that this is not the case with all top sales leaders, but for me I have to believe in the product or service I'm selling in order for me to feel satisfied with what I'm doing.

Personally, I think it is a much simpler task to turn someone who is naturally a "people person" into a salesperson than to try and turn a born "sales shark" into someone who can sell and identify with the customer.

From my earliest times in sales situations, I was always very comfortable in 90 percent of the customer interaction. My problem would arise at that point when the customer needs you to ask for the sale. It's not true with all customers, but most really do need you to follow that age-old sales curve that always ends with "asking for the sale."

This is the point where I would always find myself backing off. I would be waiting for the customer to ask to buy. What I came to realize is that we've all been conditioned by the traditional sales methods that have been in place since the first days of bartering. The majority of customers are waiting for the ask.

Luckily for me, I had some tremendous mentors who quickly pointed this out to me. At first, I was very uncomfortable. I kept complaining that I felt like the proverbial used car salesman shark circling in for the kill. I kept at it though! I began to notice that not only was I becoming more comfortable with the technique, but I found ways to own them. I put my own spin on them so that they began to feel more natural.

The amazing part was that my sales were shooting up drastically. I had always thought that I wanted to be different than other sales people. However, I could be myself and sell at the same time. I found I could interact with the customers in the same manner as before, but that I couldn't change centuries' worth of behavior patterns. If customers have taken the time to speak with me and show enough interest to let me reach that last phase of the sales interaction, the least I can do is offer them the opportunity to purchase!

Following the natural flow of a sale has now become second nature to me. So, if you are just starting out in sales or are struggling in your current efforts, please consider, are you ever actually asking anyone to buy? If not, then I highly recommend that you harness that "inner used car salesmen" and simply ask for that sale!
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