It can be unfamiliar, it can be uncomfortable, it can lead to momentary anxiety and at worst remind us that selling is ultimately a game of rejection and resilience that we voluntarily signed up to.

It can be enough to cause people to quit selling after their first day, or unfortunately never even start selling to begin with – despite it being the cornerstone of all successful business.

It can be what gives selling a bad name and what causes it to be a ‘dirty word’ in the perception of anyone who has ever received a deal that didn’t reach their expectation.

It is, of course, exploring the ‘pain’ that a potential buyer is currently experiencing that is the key to getting them to eventually make a buying decision with us.

For many sales professionals, this conversation can be tough because as humans, the last thing we want to experience is more pain – it’s the one experience we do almost anything to avoid making contact with, which is also ironically why we as human beings actually make all of our buying decisions in the first place (to solve a problem or pain, that is).

And so it goes without saying that of course asking the uncomfortable question or saying the uncomfortable thing that needs to be said would be so much easier to avoid, both socially and psychologically. Essentially, not having to talk about pain with anyone – let alone a potential buyer that we may not necessarily know well – is just, well… easier.

But all the best sales professionals and business owners will tell you straight up: Being able to have these conversations with our buyers is the key to ongoing sales success, both as a solo-riding sales professional or as a business owner making our own sales.

Anyone can have a conversation about the lighter side of life – that’s easy. But to be able to ‘get uncomfortable’ and go where no other sales professional is willing to go in order to solve a problem for the ideal buyer, that is the key to success in the field of consultative selling.

Because at the end of the selling day, it is imperative that you understand: The sales you’re not making are sitting in the conversations you’re not having.

All the sales you want to make are waiting to be made when you are ready to have the conversations you haven’t been willing to have before, and with the people you haven’t been willing to contact before.

So then, what is the key to having those conversations?

It all comes back to our intention.

Understanding that the entire purpose of the conversation is to solve problems for them, and any time we make it about us, we lose sight of what’s most important and gain experience of nerves and anxiety.

Our intention must be to improve the experience of life for our buyer first and foremost, and only then do we deserve to receive the payment or income that comes with being that problem solver.

Because as business owners, we exist to solve the problems for people that they aren’t able to solve for themselves yet; this, above all else, is the cornerstone of how and why businesses are created in the first place.

It must, therefore, be the cornerstone of our intention as we enter each and every new sales conversation, and when our intention is sound, the conversations we’re not currently having suddenly seem far more achievable than before.

Darcy J Smyth is the lead trainer of the Tonal Persuasion Method for Sales – the methodology designed to ensure you are closing sales without having to revert back to the dreaded ‘Hard Sell’ that turns so many buyers away in the modern business landscape.


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