The Hardest Part of Sales

I am convinced that everyone has something in their life that others look at and say, “I could never do that.” Me, I look in amazement at people who raise multiple children while working full-time, or wonder how friends commute into Boston every day—75 minutes each way, each day.

Are you kidding me?

In return, when people find out that I am in sales they ask, incredulously, “OMG I could never do that!”

The hardest part of sales is not the actually selling. Selling is simple. It’s a conversation that combines listening skills and problem-solving. In print sales, if you have those abilities (and the lowest price), success is guaranteed. If you don’t have the lowest price, you need the best idea and a LOT of diligence.

And rejection? It’s a natural instinct to overcome rejection. If that weren’t the case, man would never reproduce (think about that one. It’ll come to you).

No, the hardest part of sales comes once a day, usually in the morning. It’s doubt.

Doubt happens when you arrive at your desk or just before you pick up the phone the first time: You gather your thoughts and mentally prepare for the day ahead by injecting some form of self-confidence and in the process, renew the eternal belief that is essential to sales success and forget all about the miserable day you had yesterday. If anything is going to get accomplished today, you need to overcome that doubt and replace it with something else. In sales, you see, it all starts with Attitude.

Call it Blind Faith, but the sales person must believe that doing X will yield Y…eventually. Do X enough and Y will come. The problem is, Y takes a long time. Weeks? Yes. Months? Yup, that, too. In the meantime, there is a boatload of X to do and without the instant gratification we humans need, doing X in excess can be exacerbating and exhausting. Still, we somehow know that committing to X and exhibiting persistency excessively can be exciting and lead to ecstasy.

As a 30 year sales veteran, Bill has the perspective of a been-there, done-that sales rep in the commercial print arena. Following sales fundamentals and giving unapologetically "old school" advice, he writes and speaks in an entertaining fashion to make his points to sales people and owners who sell. "Bill Farquharson will drive your sales momentum."
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