Selling and Negotiation Skills, Part One

Hello and welcome back to Week 31 of The N.J.W Blog. I hope you’ve had a successful week and you’re ready for this week’s edition.

This week we begin with our topic—Selling and Negotiation Skills. I will be sharing many great insights on this topic, and I know that you will definitely benefit from them.

One of the most important things I can do to ensure success in sales is to have an air of expectancy. Even if I’ve just had 20 “no’s” in a row, we must expect and believe in a positive outcome, and we can do that if we visualize ourselves receiving the “yes.”

But before I even take the first step toward making a sales call or asking for a raise, etc., I must prepare myself mentally. It has been said that thorough preparation eliminates stress, and while that is true, we must not merely go through the motions of preparing our material and presentation without first preparing mentally. That is the most important part of preparation. What are we saying to ourselves before we make the phone call or ask the question? We must tell ourselves, “My prospect is looking for what I have; my prospect has a problem that I can solve; I will get the appointment and my calendar will be full by the end of the week.” As we continue to do this all the way through our presentation/sales process, we can more easily visualize receiving the sale, which in turn will allow our belief level to increase. When our prospect sees our belief and passion for what we are doing or selling, that will raise their level of belief too, and increase their enthusiasm toward our product.

So with that said let’s move forward with belief and positive expectancy this week/month!

Remember to check out the Activity Lessons.

To your future and your success!

-N.J.W Blog

Selling and Negotiation Skills, Part One—Attitudes of Successful Salespeople

Sales… some refer to it as one of the oldest professions, and rightly so. Whether your chosen profession is in sales or not, selling skills come into play throughout our daily lives. In fact, so much so that we often forget that the selling and negotiation process is constantly being used. Because we all have daily opportunities to apply these skills, it is important that we understand the different dynamics that affect the selling process. For example: What attitude is going to help you experience success in your selling/negotiating process? What is the best way to prospect? How do you build relationships that lead to sales? And finally, What is the best method for getting referrals and negotiating throughout the selling process? This month, under the topic of Selling, we will cover the following topics:

1. Attitudes of Successful Salespeople: The profession, setting your goals, attitudes of successful salespeople and getting and staying motivated. This is the basic overview of the profession of selling. Selling is a noble occupation, though some think otherwise. In fact, we are all in sales every day. We are selling people all of the time. In addition, our attitude, as well as getting and staying motivated are vitally important and will make or break a salesperson. We cover all of this in this week’s edition.

2. Prospecting. Because sales and success is a numbers game, we cover how to look at sales from this perspective in order to be successful. We will look at how to get in front of a large number of people so we can close a higher percentage of sales calls. We also show you the importance of “Knowing Your Stuff”—what you need to know about you, your prospect and your product. Then, we will look briefly at the importance of understanding how to sell to different personality types. All of this will be in next week’s edition.

3. Building relationships that position you as an educator/consultant to your clients. We will touch on listening skills and making the sale. Here we will also take a look at the all-important issue of relationships. Relationships in selling, as in life, are the most important factor. We don’t sell to companies, we sell to people! People always make the decisions. We will take a look at how to be a great listener and we will also discuss how to reposition yourself from being known as a salesperson to becoming seen as an educator and a consultant who helps people make the best buying decisions. We will look at this in two weeks.

4. Getting referrals/Negotiation skills. In week four we will take a look at how to get referrals so your business is ever-expanding. That is the key to a successful sales business—the ever-expanding network of people to draw sales from. We will also cover the basics of negotiation. This will have an emphasis on how to get both sides into a winning position so they can be happy with the sale. We will give you specific skills to get into win-win negotiations—all of this in three weeks.

In spite of all that you may hear, selling is a noble profession. It gets a bad rap, I know. People see you coming and think to themselves, “I wonder what he’s selling?” And it isn’t generally a good anticipation. But think about it: Selling is an everyday occurrence. We all do it! Don’t think that young child isn’t selling you when she asks to spend the night at her friend’s house or go to a birthday party. Isn’t that teenage boy selling himself to the young woman he wants to take to the prom? Of course! Isn’t a college student selling when trying to upgrade his final score on his term paper? And aren’t we all selling when we try to get a raise from our boss? You bet we are. Doesn’t a husband have to sell his wife sometimes when he wants to get that new boat? You bet. Selling happens all of the time. We all do it. Even those people who “don’t like selling” are salespeople themselves. They just don’t know it or they have put the concept of selling into a box where it doesn’t belong.

Yes, when you sell you have entered into an arena that consists of the best… and the worst. There is a reason that “sales” has a bad reputation. There have been countless men and women through the years who have earned their reputation as snake-oil salesmen. They represent the worst, and unfortunately have put you and I in a bad light.

But there is hope! I can show people what a truly great salesperson is all about. I can help change the opinions of people about what it means to be in sales. I can help shift people’s paradigm so they see that salespeople are really there to help them according to their needs, not the salesperson’s needs.

I can help people understand that not everyone is out to get them. I can raise the humanity of it all and show that some people are out to help, not out to get you. Yes, sales is a profession you and I should be proud of. We should be able to look at ourselves and those around us who are “in sales” and think respectfully of each other. If we do it well, and show others how to do it well too, we can begin a fundamental shift in people’s minds as it relates to selling and salespeople. And that’s a good thing.

Here are some thoughts for you to consider as we begin this month focusing on sales:

1. Setting your goals. Now I know its not the most exciting thing to talk about. but its very important for you to understand . A few brief words on goal-setting, since it is at the core of a successful sales career. Do you want to be successful? I imagine that you do. Then it is imperative that you learn to set goals. As we covered goal-setting in great depth during month two, here is a short refresher course:

Know what you want. Do you really know what you want? It is one thing to say, “I want to be rich.” It is another altogether to say, “I want to have one million dollars in the bank.” It is best to be specific—that is a goal. If you aren’t specific, it is a wish. If you want to be successful in sales, you need to have, as well as define, a clear idea of what that means to you.

Write it down. Once you know what you want, write your goals down. Be specific. Put them on cards and keep them in front of you. Put them in your journal. Put them on your mirror. Put them in your car. Write your goals down and read them constantly throughout the day. Writing your goals down facilitates reading them and reading them will condition your mind for success. If you want to be successful in sales, write your goals down and review them every day.

Regularly evaluate. You need to establish some regular interval at which you sit down, look at your goals and evaluate them. Have you hit them? Are they too big or too small? Do you need some changes? When you look at them, make these decisions and then act. If you want to be successful in sales, you need to not only set goals but evaluate your execution of them.

Celebrate. What good is achieving a goal if you can’t celebrate it? All of the great goal-setters I have met and know are people who celebrate or build in a reward for hitting their goals. This is one more incentive that will encourage you in your pursuit of the goal—knowing you will get the reward for it! If you want to be successful in sales, you will want to reward yourself when you reach your goals!

Stretch again. No getting lazy here. Have your celebration, but then stretch yourself again. No time to sit around, you know. Instead, take a look and see where you want to go from here. You have the whole world before you. You have proven to yourself that you can set and achieve goals, so why not do it again, only setting your sights higher than before? If you want to be successful in sales you will always be looking for the next goal to set and achieve, stretching yourself to go further than before.

2. Attitudes of successful salespeople. Your attitude in life and in sales determines to a great degree where you will end up. If you think that life is a drag and nice guys finish last, then your attitude will keep you at the bottom rung. But if your attitude is great and you believe in what you are doing, your attitude will take you to the top of the ladder.

Here are the three most important attitudes I believe that salespeople should have to make them successful.

My product or service is good for people. You have to believe this. If you don’t then you may never be successful. Make sure your attitude is one that says you are proud of what you are selling. If you are proud of it, then that will shine through to your customers. They will sense that you believe in it, which will bring them closer to buying.

I can be successful. This may seem basic, but it is at the root of all success. Do you believe that you can not only do well but be wildly successful in sales? If you are going to the top, you will need to train your attitude to know that it is only a matter of time before you get that “Salesperson of the Year” award. The road is steep but the reward is great. Tell yourself, “No matter how tough it gets, no matter how many obstacles I face, the reward I am aiming for is worth the effort. I choose the goals, I choose the rewards, and I choose to persevere until I get them all! Roadblocks won’t stop me, and I’ll do whatever it takes to achieve my reward!”

If you are in sales, you have chosen a noble profession, my friend. You are making a great contribution to the world around you by the products and services you offer, but also in the kind of person you are. I offer you my greatest encouragement! If you are not “officially” in sales, you still will have daily/weekly opportunities to apply all the ideas and insights this month has to offer.

Until next week, let’s do something remarkable!

-Nick James

Supplemental Notes

Getting and staying motivated: One of the major keys to ensure success as a salesperson is to get and stay motivated. Even the best salespeople hear the word “no” too often, and unless you know how to get and stay motivated, you are in trouble. Sales requires long hours, a lot of discipline and the ability to keep on going even when times are tough. So with that in mind, we want to share some thoughts with you on the top six ways to stay motivated.

The Top Six Ways to Stay Motivated

Get Motivated Every Day. Zig Ziglar was once confronted about being a “motivational speaker.” The guy said to him, “You guys come and get people hyped up and then you leave and the motivation goes away. It doesn’t last, and then you have to get motivated again.” Zig reminded the gentleman that baths are the same way, but we think it is a good idea to take a bath every day!

It is true that motivation doesn’t last. We have to renew it each and every day. That’s OK. It doesn’t make motivation a bad thing. We simply have to realize that if we want to stay motivated over the long term, it is something we will have to apply ourselves to each and every day.

Have a Vision for Your Life. The root word of motivation is “motive.” The definition of motive is, “A reason to act.” This is the cognitive or rational side of motivation. It is your vision. You have to have a vision that is big enough to motivate you. If you are making $50,000 a year, it isn’t going to motivate you to set your goal at $52,000 a year. You just won’t get motivated for that because the reward isn’t enough. Maybe $70,000 a year would work for you. Set out a vision and a strategy for getting there. Have a plan and work the plan.

Fuel Your Passion. Much of motivation is emotional. Emotion is a powerful force in getting us going. Passion is an emotion, so fuel your passion. “Well, I like to work on logic,” you may say. Great, now work on your passion. Set yourself on a course to have a consuming desire for your goal, whatever it is. Do whatever you can to feel the emotion and use it to your advantage!

Work Hard Enough to Get Good Results. You can build on your motivation by getting results. The harder you work, the more results you will get, and the more results you get, the more you will be motivated to get more. These things all build on one another. If you want to lose weight, then lose the first few pounds. When the belt moves to the next notch you will get fired up to get it to the notch beyond that!

Put Good Materials Into Your Mind. I can’t say this enough: Listen to personal development audios and read good books. Listen to and read books that teach you new ideas and skills, that tell the stories of successful people. Buy them, consume them and get motivated! Buy great music and listen to it, too. Music can get you going and motivate you!

Ride the Momentum When It Comes. Sometimes you will just be clicking and sometimes you won’t. That is OK. It is the cycle of life. When you aren’t clicking, plug away. When you are clicking, pour it on because momentum will help you get larger gains in a shorter period of time with less energy. That is the Momentum Equation! When you are feeling good about how your work is going, ride the momentum and get as much out of it as you can!

These are simple principles that, when you put them to work regularly, will change your life by keeping you motivated all the time! so don’t wait and get started.

Until Next week lets do something remarkable.

N.J.W Blog

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