Written By : Dave Kahle, Total Views :2748
Most sales people sort of slid into sales as a result of being “nice” people, and showing some skills or knowledge which their bosses considered helpful for sales. They found the increase in income and the freedom to organize their day as they saw fit to be attractive aspects of the job. The next thing you know, they were a sales person.
One of my clients recently mentioned to me that, when hiring prospective sales people, he looks for a “passion for sales” in their personality. The idea struck me. I had never really thought in those terms before. What is a ‘passion for sales?’ What does it look like? Is it really an indicator of a successful sales person? And, how do you identify it?
Perhaps the reason it struck me is that for 20 years I have been working with sales people who, for the most part, never really started out wanting to be sales people. I think that is true of the overwhelming mass of sales people. They really didn’t get there by following a well defined, intentional career path. Most sales people sort of slid into sales as a result of being “nice” people, and showing some skills or knowledge which their bosses considered helpful for sales. They found the increase in income and the freedom to organize their day as they saw fit to be attractive aspects of the job. The next thing you know, they were a sales person.
But a “passion for sales?” Rarely, in my experience. Here’s a test to see if you, or your sales people if you are a sales leader, have a passion for sales.
Do you (or they) invest in your own development as a sales person? I am convinced that only one out of 20 sales people has actually spent $25.00 of his own money on his own improvement in the last 12 months. I believe that is an indication of a person’s interest in the profession of sales.
Here’s an example. I am a mediocre golfer. But I really like it. Since I have a “passion for golf,” I invest in my golfing ability. I subscribe to the magazines; I buy a golf book every now and then; I follow a couple of golf websites; and I take lessons every couple of years. I go to the driving range and practice almost every week in the summer. This year, I did a bit of a study on which golf ball I should be using, and made an informed decision. While I readily admit that I am not a good golfer, at the same time I will absolutely assert that I am getting better, always better. If I live long enough, I will become an excellent golfer.
There is nothing unique in that. What’s true for me and my passion for golf is true for everyone and their passions. It is certainly true of sales people. If they have a passion for the profession, they will invest their own time and money in it. They’ll subscribe to the magazines and Ezines, they’ll buy the books, go to the seminars, network with other good sales people, and practice as much as they can. Their money and time will follow their passion.
Is it an indicator of sales success? I think so. It may be the ultimate indicator of eventual sales success. Just like me and golf. Eventually, I am going to be a good golfer. My passion for it will lead me to learn, and eventually I will figure it out. So, too, for sales people. Given a modicum of talent, their motivation will drive them to learn, and eventually they will absorb enough of the principles and practices of effective professional sales, they will incorporate them into their routines, and they will be successful.
How do you identify it? Pre-hire aptitude assessments can uncover it. I remember taking a battery of psychological tests as part of the hiring process for one of my employers. The report that resulted pegged me as having “a singular intense attraction for persuasive activities.” In other words, a passion for sales. The pre-hire assessments that we sell provide a measurement of a candidate’s sales inclinations.
But, probably the best way is to examine their investments in themselves. Have they invested in their own growth as sales people? A number of years ago, I discovered that my alma mater, the University of Toledo, had a world-class sales school in the college of business. Young people actually take a major in “sales” and learn to sell in college. For a number of years, I have been donating a day a year, speaking to the classes of this number one rated sales school. How encouraging! An academic institution devoted to developing young people who have a passion for sales.
But few are fortunate enough to have been educated in the sales profession in college. That doesn’t stop those with the passion. The ultimate question is, “Have they invested in themselves?” Have they bought the books, attended the seminars, read the newsletters, etc.? If they have, you can be pretty sure they are passionate about the profession. If they haven’t, the opposite is true.
As an experienced sales trainer who has educated tens of thousands of sales people and their leaders, I can tell you that my job is so much easier when I have a room full of committed, passionate sales people. And so much more difficult when they really don’t care.
As for me and my company, I’ll take a passionate sales person every day of the week.
Click here for
Articles by this Author:
- First Steps to Effective Sales Planning
- Position Yourselves with Power
- Too Much Time Is Wasted on Customers Who Aren't Worth the Investment
- Is the Customer Always Right?
- How to Rise to the Top of Your Sales Career
- How to Determine if a Prospect Requires Extraordinary Efforts
- What is More Important than the Sale?
- New Rules for Value-Added Sales Calls
- Sales Calls for Current Customers - How Much Is Enough?
- The Fruits of Powerful Business Relationships
- How to Make Customer Service People Proactive
- What Constitutes A "Good Sales Day?"
- Solutions for the Most Common Mistakes of Sales Professionals
- Four Fundamentals for Effectively Penetrating Key Accounts
- How Often Should Sales Managers Visit Customers?
- Creating Positive B2B Relationships in a Difficult Economy
- How to Methodically Invest in Your Professional Development
- The Rare Building Blocks of Exceptional Salespeople
- How to Respond to a Rude Customer
- How to Entice Prospects to Call Back
- Maintain Positive Relationships with Alternative Steps for Closing the Sale
- The Components of a Well Planned Sales Call
- Morality Coincides with Wise Business
- Listening Skills that Provide the Competitive Edge for Successful Selling
- Conquer These Time-Wasted Habits and Start Selling!
- Selling Commodities: Are You Different from the Competitors?
- A System to Nurture Your Prospects and Create Success Stories
- Personal Goals vs Company Goals: What do you do when they don't match?
- Do You Focus on the Highest Potential Customer?
- Dicover the Hidden Path to Sales Success
- The 3 Most Commonly Made Sales Presentation Mistakes
- When Is The Right Time for Sales Training?
- The Top Five Practices of Super Star Sales People: Can WE Learn From THEM?
- What's The Most Important Skill To Be Successful In This New Economy?
- Avoid The Popcorn Effect And Create A Powerful Sales Marketing System
- What Is A Professional Sales Person?
- You Do Need A Game Plan for Success! Develop A Selling System
- Lackluster Sales: The Reason Behind Mediocrity
- If You Are Going to Present Effectively, You Must Prepare Thoroughly
- Are You Wasting Your Customers' Time? Add Value to Every Sales Call
- Finessing the Customer: Handling Objections
- Gaining an Advantage by Collecting Information about your Competitors
- Shaping the Salesperson's Character
- Popcorn Marketing
- Is Telemarketing Feasible For My Business?
- The Ultimate Survival Skill
- Can CSR's Become Proactive?
- Don't Fire All the Salespeople Just Yet!
- Myths of Sales Management
- What is a Professional Sales Manager?
- The Three Most Common Mistakes Sales Managers Make
- The Sales Blitz!
- FIP Principle
- Are There Best Practices for Salespeople?
- Why Good Salespeople Often Turn into Mediocre Sales Managers
- Is An Uneducated Sales Force Draining Your Profits?
- Just Listen!
- 8 Essential Tips on How to Make A Perfect Follow Up Call
- 5 Closing Questions You Must Be Asking
- Seven Voice Mail Scripts You Must Have!
- How to Submit an Article on Sales Gravy
- List of Blockbuster Movies for TEAM Building
- What Not To Do On a Cold Call eMail
- Forget Closing The Deal | Get The Appointment!
- 5 Secrets to Effective Email
- Confirming Sales Appointments: Are You Asking For The Cancellation?
- Don't Bring a Knife to a Gun Fight
- The 5 Best Openings
- Is Cold Calling Effective: Calculating the Present, Future and Net Value of a Prospect
- I Just Called to See How Things are Going
- The Art of Effective Follow up
- Attack Yourself
Hot Sales Jobs