Whilst sales is an honourable profession, not all in the field act honourably. When is the last time you saw a salesperson portrayed in a favourable light in a film or book? We can all recount experiences when we were targeted by a sales person devoid of charisma or someone trying to sell us a product or service that we didn’t want or need.
So, what is sales charisma and why is it important in today's marketplace?
Sales charisma is a mix of strength of character and genuine warmth. These two qualities are indispensable for building rapport, achieving high levels of selling success and protecting your brand’s reputation.
Strength of character is comprised of the conviction to act as a professional when dealing with prospects in order to instil their confidence in you. Genuine warmth is demonstrated through actually caring about the person sitting across your desk. This unique combination of character and warmth is relatively rare in the business world - however it can be developed.
The main barrier to sales charisma is this: Sales people are all at risk of viewing prospects as ‘objects’ – a means to make a sale and fulfil targets.
The first rule to achieving sales charisma is to treat prospects as people with genuine issues that they’re looking to fix - potentially by acquiring your product or service. By identifying those challenges and the impact on the prospect you’ll be demonstrating empathy as you will have an understanding of the deeper consequences of their issues.
Acting professionally may mean making some difficult personal choices. For example, asking yourself during the sales process “will what I’m selling really fix my prospect’s issues?” When the prospect’s challenges cannot be remedied by your product or service you need to have the strength of character to walk away.
When selling in any market, the reputation of your brand is more important than any single sale. Your prospect’s perception of you is what will dictate all of your future interactions. And if you walked away from a sale when you can’t help? Well, your professionalism may open the door to future referrals and your reputation remains intact.