As a sales professional, you prepare for interactions with your prospects.
You stay up to speed on the most effective tactics. You attend training. You role play. You debrief, analyze, and work to improve your skills.
Amid all that preparation, you may be burying the most critical tool in your sales call toolbox...
...yourself. Your unique personality. The things that makes you “you.”
But this isn’t just a feel-good, “be yourself” pep talk.
Tools like Gallup’s StrengthsFinder 2.0 system can help you identify your most important personality strengths and offer specific strategies for applying them.
And these strategies can have a tangible impact on outcomes. Here are 3 specific reasons your personality leads to more appointments and sales:
1. Being Yourself is Your Strongest Skill
What do you like best about your personality? What do your friends and colleagues like about you?
Are you funny? Or are you “no-nonsense”?
Are you upbeat and enthusiastic? Or are you patient and deliberate?
Are you detail-oriented? Or are you a big-picture person?
Whatever personal strengths you exhibit may seem simple and unremarkable to you. But that’s because those characteristics are so natural and comfortable to you. They’re what you do best. And you want to be at your best when you interact with your prospects.
If you’re funny, use your humor to disarm prospects and lighten the mood. If you’re a “no-nonsense” rep, aim to strike a more serious tone, and let prospects know their time is important and won’t be wasted.
Similarly, enthusiastic sales reps should raise the energy level of the meeting and any attendees. Patient and deliberate sales reps should play up their “unflappability” and assure prospects that any challenge can be addressed calmly and patiently.
Of course, it’s important to remember that your natural tendencies aren’t always an appropriate or effective sales strategy. Funny sales reps shouldn’t be clowns, and detail-oriented sales reps shouldn’t spend hours discussing irrelevant product features.
Check yourself… but be yourself. It’s what you’re best at.
2. Every Car Needs a Driver
The sales techniques you learn about in your reading, training, and role playing are extremely important. They can increase your overall sales success rate and make a big difference in your and your business’s bottom line.
But in the end, they’re just a vehicle for sales success. You're the driver.
If you fail to inject your personality into the questions you ask or the phrases you use, they’ll fall flat or come across as disingenuous. And they won’t elicit the desired reaction in your prospect.
Moreover, prospects don’t buy from tactics. They buy from people who use smart tactics. Whenever you adopt a new tactic, put your own spin on it. Ask yourself: “How can I put this tactic to use so that it works best for me?”
3. To Earn Your Prospect’s Trust, Don’t Lie
Trust is the critical element in the prospect-sales rep relationship.
Trust means your prospect believes you want to help him solve a problem... rather than merely sell him a product.
If you hold something back or force yourself into a preconceived mold, your prospects will pick up on it, and they’ll be less likely to give you the trust you’re looking and working for.
On the other hand, if you put your true self out there, your prospects will perceive you as genuine and trustworthy, and all that preparation will pay off with more successful cold calls and appointments.
(...and hopefully a lot more sales.)