Take a moment and think of a sales “superstar” you know. You might think of someone who is charismatic, comfortable in a crowd and good with words. While those have historically been considered must-haves for a salesperson, the game is changing. “Being talkative and persuasive are often treated as must-have skills for salespeople,” writes Marc Wayshak in a recent Entrepreneur article. “But the truth is, these are totally outdated sales skills. In fact, you don’t even need them anymore.”
Nowadays, emphasis is placed on creating a connection rather than just selling. Sales superstars of today now possess a variety of unique skills. Wayshak notes these skills in his article, calling them “critical” to success. Below are a few of these must-haves:
Ability to listen.
The most successful salespeople know that selling is not about them or their story. It’s about the prospects. In reality, salespeople are often too busy thinking of what they will say next instead of listening.
Holding your ground.
Wayshak points out that this is one of the most underappreciated sales skills. “The customer is always right” is a mantra in the industry but it’s not correct. Customers and prospects can be wrong, and it’s up to the salesperson to notify them when they are off-base. “It may be intimidating at first, but this will only make prospects appreciate you more,” he writes. “They’ll recognize you as an expert and respect that you’re not afraid to risk a sale by holding your ground.”
Know how to present case studies.
Enthusiasm is a valuable trait in sales but it’s not everything. Sure, an enthusiastic presenter engages the audience during a presentation but audiences need more. This is where cases studies can make reps stand out. “Give specific and concrete examples of how you’ve solved clients’ challenges in the past,” Wayshak explains. “You’ll make your presentations seem far more engaging—and close far more sales.”
These are just a few of the suggestions from Wayshak’s article. Compare his suggestions to your own strategy: Do already do any of these? If not, are you willing to try?