By Tracy Mallette
Here’s what’s great about salespeople. Don’t reread that – you saw it right the first time: SALESPEOPLE. Sure, they aren’t the most beloved of our species, but the rest of us can learn a thing or two from them.
I’ve been Marketing Coordinator at Franchise Solutions and Franchise.com for a year now, and the majority of my job requires keeping up with the sales team. And, believe it or not, I LOVE these people.
Here are 10 things we can all learn from salespeople:
- They’re outgoing: Their job requires getting out there, talking to, and interacting with people. They aren’t socially awkward because they’ve developed communication skills and perfect them daily.
- They work really hard: Their income relies on their ability to sell, so you better believe they work extra hard to do it right. They put in extra time. With my luxurious 8-hour schedule, I’m out the door at 5, and every other week I know my steady paycheck will be in my account. Sure, they can pull in more than me, but I don’t have to worry about mine dipping too low. Of course, I’m not saying they only work hard because their pockets depend on it; it takes a driven person to choose that type of career.
- They don’t give up: There are a lot of people who don’t want to buy what you’re selling. Salespeople are able to let it go and move on to someone who’s interested. They even revisit the ones who weren’t later on because their needs might change. The #1 lesson in life is to not give up, and sales professionals have it down.
- They don’t let a mean comment – or a zillion – get them down: This breed of human is resilient like no other. The Sales Director told me shortly after I started here, “You can’t hurt their feelings”. They have to roll with the punches or they wouldn’t last. I don’t think I could handle one day of what people probably say to them on the phone. Think about conversations you’ve had with salespeople on the phone – would you want to be on the other end of that all day long!?
- They’re hilarious: Part of their outgoing, social nature is their sense of humor. These people are just plain funny, and go all out to entertain – whether it’s a kissing booth at a trade show or office antics.
- They’re honest (No, really! But maybe that’s just our salespeople): Often, I hear them on the phone discussing our sites with clients. And they’re telling them the truth. They don’t make false promises and won’t just tell you whatever you want to hear to make a sale.
- They clearly express what they want: OK, this one shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone. It’s kind of an extension of the honesty attribute, but it’s more than that. I’m honest, but I don’t like to offend or impose so I can be wishy-washy (I’m working on this). Indirectly dancing around your intentions is aggravating and inhibits communication. Salespeople don’t do that. When a member of our sales team comes in to see me, I’m never left wondering if I understood what they want. That’s a great thing in the business world – presented in a tactful way, of course.
- They give credit where it’s due: They recognize the efforts of others, and thank them for that effort. It’s a simple thing, but it goes a long way, and people want to help you if they know you appreciate it.
- They help others: Stop laughing – this one’s serious, too! They are advocates for their clients. Their job isn’t done when they’ve made the sale, although it could be. They build relationships and want to give clients the best experience possible. Bricks 4 Kidz franchise owner Brian Pappas introduced his family to Jamie at a trade show because he was so impressed with her. As I was writing this, Kim came in asking why her client Relax the Back didn’t make it on my press-release-to-do list (Sorry, just forgot to type it in there – nothing against them). She sent me a list of others to include as well because she wanted to help them (she doesn’t get paid for press releases going out, and they’re not included in a client’s agreement with us). Going above and beyond for clients is just second nature to them.
- They’re confident: Some of the other things on this list are probably due to confidence, but it deserves its own mention because of its importance as a human characteristic. For some of us, it’s hard to be confident. Salespeople know that it’s hard to sell anything else if you can’t sell yourself. The rest of us get nervous going to an occasional job interview, but salespeople are interviewed and tested multiple times a day. If the rest of us had to sell ourselves every day, we’d have stellar confidence, too.
So, everyone who’s not a salesperson, get over your grudges and prejudices, and learn something from these fascinating creatures! And, to salespeople at Franchise Solutions, Franchise.com and everywhere else, thank you for teaching the rest of us such valuable lessons and rejoice in your awesomeness!
I know there’s more to glean from these people. Please share anything you’ve learned from a salesperson or, if you’re a salesperson, what else can we learn from you?