One of the most important things we do (as Sales Trainers & Coaches) is to determine what motivates our clients. Sometimes that’s easy to do – other times, not so much.
The question is an easy one to ask: “Why are you in sales?” The hard part (for some salespeople) are the answers we have heard:
- I really like people
- I love the freedom to make my own schedule
- I like to help people
- I like to solve people’s problems
- I’m a people-person
- I’m really good with people
Sure, it’s a loaded question! We know what the answer “should” be. Most salespeople give the answer they “think” we want – the answer they think will win us over & make them look really good. Mistake.
Sales pros out there hear this: IT IS OK TO WANT MONEY! Matter of fact, in our experience, if “for the money” is not in the top 2 reasons for you to be in sales, might we suggest a new career.
This gig is hard enough. How many times have we said this? Let’s face it. . . Once again, we talk to strangers all day long. . . who don’t want to talk to us. . . about something they don’t want to buy. Who would do that? And if you do happen to do that, when you find someone that does want to buy, you had better be paid well. Simple as that.
But no. Most salespeople “say” they really like people (join the Peace Corps). They say they really like to help people (the Health Care field is always looking for nurses). They like to solve people’s problems (psychiatrist isn’t a bad career). They say they are people-persons (Wall Mart is looking for greeters). They say they are really good with people (sounds like customer service at any cable company).
Why so tough on “people persons” you ask? It has been our observation over the years that these people have a hard time making a living in sales. Why? They tend to do things that “nice people” do. Like what?
- Talk to anyone that will talk with them (not always high-level decision makers)
- Discount pricing (after all, I can’t get full price from my “friends”)
- Trust prospects that want to “think it over” (chasing them for decisions…)
- Make friends on sales calls (not sales)
- Never, ever ask a tough question (not qualifying opportunities strongly enough)
Salespeople that are in it for the money have a different mind-set – & it’s professional & it’s appropriate. They see themselves as problem-solvers, that look for problems, not friends. They understand they work for “for-profit” companies & are comfortable charging for it. Most of all they appreciate the “economics of selling” & don’t waste time educating prospects so much that they end up chasing them for decisions.
It’s OK to be MONEY MOTIVATED! Matter of fact, it’s preferred.