Successful salespeople don’t follow the rules. This is what makes them succeed. Paradoxically, following rules is what makes average sales people, well, remain average. Here are three attributes of becoming a successful salesperson, by breaking the rules.

Focus on result not process

Your sales rule book or standard operating procedure (SOP) likely outlines number of calls, and follow-up emails, to be made, both complete with a script. The average sales person sees this as it is; a deadline not a guideline. Therefore, he uses it as a crutch. If you have sales reports that have statements like, ‘Called but did not pick’, ‘email sent, awaiting response’, ‘said he will call back’ and such other defeatist, dead-end ineffective statements then you know you are average. Now this is how to become an effective salesperson.

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What successful sales people do is see the SOP for what it is – a recommended way of doing things, and not the desired result; that is, getting potential buyer (prospect) engagement. And, like a shrewd sales person, the result is what he focuses on. And so, throwing away the rule book he sets to get two client meetings a day if in B2B and eight, B2C. It doesn’t matter what it takes and whether it is as per the rule book or not; so long as it is not a con job but is ethical, he will do it.

Become a successful salesperson by managing pride

Who are the most successful salespeople you know? Study them for how to become an effective sales person. You will find that habits of successful sales professionals include not having qualms about morphing to get the sale. Average sales people get bogged down with image. They say things like, ‘I cannot be seen to be begging’, ‘I’m awaiting my (branded company car) to be repaired so that’s why I’m not selling’. These are not the qualities of a good salesman. Image is something the winning salesperson deploys as a tool for sales success.

become a successful salesperson

One in Uganda hires a Land Rover Discovery when going to negotiate a sale commensurate to that high end vehicle. He cannot afford one himself but that doesn’t stop him from accessing that calibre of prospect. Another bank sales rep I know had no qualms pitching in the ladies room when the prospect, possibly as an objection, said that that was the only place a pitch could be made away from the employer’s prying eyes. Both successful salespeople got the sale. Just as is the top salesperson, who while at an outreach or exhibition tent, engages tout-, while the average seller, cashier-mode. The stellar seller walks over to pitch or invite passers-by to the tent. Many times he gets the lead he was looking for. The average salesperson sees it as begging,

Read: Like successful salespeople, boost your sales with problem identification, not problem solving

Importance of sales personality

The successful sales techniques that make average salespeople become successful salespeople also have to do with self-awareness. One people-oriented salesperson had plenty of incomplete applications as just couldn’t close. ‘Client said he forgot ID’ or ‘Client said he will bring pay slip tomorrow’ he would report with utter genuineness. Seemingly doomed to failure, when we raised his awareness to his personality, his sales performance needle dramatically moved to sales success in three months! Working with his empathy driven nature, we asked him if reminding these clients to carry the missing items just before they left the house is something he could do. His eyes it up. It was. He did it. His sales performance graph spiked. Unfortunately, the average sales person resignedly agrees that his personality is the reason for his sales mediocrity.

Do you want to become a successful salesperson? What is your sales personality?

Read also: Sales success contains seeds of destruction


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