COMMUNICATION SKILLS IN SALES
I’ve had this conversation with our salespeople. Shared this with our staff. Chatted about it with my kids. And I’ve shared this message in my church. The whole world, the universe, and everything we experience began with the spoken word! Everything. I never understood how powerful that statement is. But I now understand how communication skills in sales should be our top priority.
Still, I know communication breakdowns occur in homes, marriages, and interpersonal relationships. Those breakdowns can happen when people are having trouble with their communication. It’s always about communication. People think, no, it’s a lack of wisdom. It’s education. It is, but it’s not that we know what to do. However, we know what’s supposed to be happening.
All salespeople know about engaging people. We call people to agree with our objectives and agendas and compel them to go forward. Salespeople appreciate these things, but sometimes we lose it on the communication side. The real skill isn’t the basis of understanding the parts and the forms. It’s in communication about the whole.
EDUCATION, COMMUNICATION, AND SALES
To begin with, people get an education, but they don’t have communication skills. And that is breaking down every aspect of our society. Look around you. The people achieving the highest levels in sales have mastered their communication skills. Anytime there’s an objection, somebody starts taking you down a path you didn’t want to go. It’s because somebody is always selling and influencing somebody else, right? Right!
We hear it in sales training and read about it in sales books. They’re either selling you, or you’re selling them. They’re convincing you, or you’re convincing them. “The price is too high,” or “I don’t need this now.” “Why do I have to wait?” or “Why do I have to talk to somebody else?” Conversely, they’re convincing you instead of you convincing them. You have to communicate with them to drop the excuses and make an intelligent decision.
And many times, what will happen is we start thinking something’s wrong. Is there something wrong with the picture of the business? Or is something wrong with that vision or a financial picture? Something else needs to occur first, and that’s common. That’s where communication skills in sales become integral.
People make excuses for not doing things and don’t want to feel mistaken or judged. It’s almost a battle of the more significant fear of being the most wrong. Thus, people will fight hard not to be incorrect.
When we’re selling, it’s always the same worries. Everyone hates the feeling of rejection. We’re always trying to take ourselves to the next level, even when we may not be good at it yet. We must identify our own obstacles when trying to get to the next level. Creating a more significant business requires us to leave our comfort zone. Most of us need to be more organized. Is it getting over procrastination and picking up the phone more often? In this quick-read article on LinkedIn, Vandit Shah gives us the ten most common reasons for losing a sale.
Could we be better about going in and out of these different businesses, being more assertive? Should we try to curb being bold? We all have these other things to deal with. Yet, the communications surrounding our sales should be at the top of our list.
What about Doubt?
Sometimes we want to get it done. But skip educating ourselves and rehearsing enough. We must get communication and education on the same page to be the most compelling.
Clearly, when we don’t have the communication right, we walk away feeling underappreciated. Now that doubt creeps in. And the funny thing is that you weren’t the only one that left the situation with doubt.
When we’re rehearsed, we’ll not be the ones filled with doubt leaving the table. In fact, we will convince them that this is the most important thing they could do today. We discussed in this earlier blog how practice affects our sales achievements.
Communicate your passion with your communications skills
Undoubtedly, I am the most passionate about Electronic Caregiver Inc. Nobody’s more passionate than me. None believe in it more than I do, with more confidence about our investors and team’s future. No one else knows up close, personal the confidence and peace of mind our customers get from our product. No one’s more convinced of any of these things than me.
I know we have the most dedicated customer service team. We’ve got the best product with the best mix of services ever brought to this market. And tomorrow’s innovations take us to a new level. There are no other medical alert sales teams like ours.
Our Master Care Partners unpack the issues and the challenges associated with fears. Fears of living or living with a chronic illness are so common. They understand what the real risks are. All realize unexpected things happen to unsuspecting people at the most inconvenient times. What do YOU know about your company? Additionally, can you communicate that?
Life happens, and we can warn them ahead of time
Who would have thought at 40 that Tom would have a broken back? That he would have to worry about whether he’d walk again and have a healthy dose of independence in the future? Sadly, he was so young when he came off that ladder.
Or John Barber, who’s out in a field in Wisconsin in a tractor in the mud. It rolled over, and he tried to get on top. But he got trapped below, couldn’t get to his phone, and his leg pinned underneath. Nobody miles away knows he is suffering in excruciating pain and cannot get help.
We know about all the things we talk about on the pitch; falling on trails or abduction on walks. We hear about others attacked in department stores or chased down by somebody’s dog.
You never know
You never know what’s going to happen. It’s auto accidents. We see somebody in their forties and fifties have a heart attack. We see somebody slip on ice or grease.
Her kids went to school, her husband went to work, and she fell down the stairs. Now she can’t move with a paralyzed broken neck and a busted hip, sobbing at the bottom of the stairs. No one can hear her. Consequently, she lays there for nine hours. We know these situations happen to people that were even strong and agile, not older.
Our Master Care Partners tell them, “This is also for people who want to stay healthy, active, and safe.” What do you need to communicate to your potential customer? Have you rehearsed your answers to their objections?
The quiet sparring
Everyone wants to ensure they are good to go no matter what. There could be guns blazing, fists swinging and jaws clenching. Maybe there is a fire raging, gnashing metal, or a heart-stopping. We know how important it is to have an expedited response. We know it. But some days, our team members see defeat because the objections came. They had the education but not the communication skills. In all honesty, they could not relay their passion.
Potential customers will feel it if you can’t say what’s in your heart and can’t say it compellingly. If you can’t spar a little bit and get past objection, folks know it. The only thing that they can grow the muscle of their confidence in you is to object and see how you respond. Sometimes it’s very conscious, and sometimes, it’s unconscious. And sometimes, people don’t want to part with their money and feel like it is a stupid decision.
The win-win lose-lose in sales communications
Consumers have the same fear of rejection. They hate having validation withdrawn by feeling they made a stupid decision. And they need your confidence and communication skills to build their own confidence. Both of you could do a transaction that leaves everybody feeling like they won.
There’s either a sale made, and everybody wins, or no sale made, and everybody loses. When that happens, both sides lose. In fact, both responded to fears and did not want rejection.
Somebody gives up because they don’t want to pressure and push the other person. So, they bow their head and leave in resignation in a personal sense of defeated shame. They wonder if they should have tried harder, knowing they could have done better. They convince themselves and try to rebuild positivity in their outlook. And so tell themselves it was the right thing to do to walk away.
Meanwhile, in the depth of sales communications
“Even with all the passion about their product, they sure gave up when I gave them a little pushback. I made the right decision,” is what the customer thinks now.
As a result, they doubt the company, question the product, and suspect you. And down underneath the surface in our gut, we all know it. That anguish and sense of defeat come when we don’t rise, stand up, and say, “I am not taking no for an answer.”
Ask for the order. Don’t be afraid. Because as soon as you turn and walk out that door, they’ll feel good they surrendered and made that decision. Don’t give up.
“I need some time to think about it.” Well, what are you going to think about? Do you feel like you got your questions answered? Are there questions that you haven’t had answered yet? Do you know why this makes sense, the process of ensuring that we know all these things can happen out there?”
People are sometimes reluctant to do things in their best interest if they have to admit they are moving closer to danger. Almost as though they’re one step closer to some trauma or tragedy.
Why wouldn’t they want it?
They don’t want to have to use it. But let me tell you something. When we go out in our automobile and get hit or totaled by some uninsured driver, we want that insurance. I don’t want to look back and say, “I didn’t want to admit that that could happen.” Like, we have got to have that insurance.
With this intention, a salesperson skilled in communication might say, “People can go down for many reasons. It’s terrifying, and I don’t want that for you. My company and I don’t want that for anybody. We care so much about this community and our customers. I want to be able to care about you that way and know that you’ve got that peace of mind and confidence.” Sold.
From my perspective
In either case, I prefer they look me in the eye, feel the total weight of my confidence, and know I am an expert. Inside, they know that unexpected things happen to unsuspecting people at inconvenient times.
Therefore, I am there to communicate to them through my sales skills that we will be that guardian angel. We will ensure they are never unattended, especially when something happens later today, tomorrow, next week, or next month.
In closing, I always encourage my sales team to practice up. They know to polish up and use their communication skills in sales. It’s their job to write the order and get their community protected today. Tomorrow isn’t promised to any of us, and life will happen.