I had the pleasure recently to meet Leah Zissimopulos of Crime Prevention, a security company in Florida. Leah is new to selling in the security industry and brings an interesting and fresh perspective. Here’s an article she wrote that I thought many would benefit from reading.
“At 23, I struggled not to take things personally. Cut me off on the road, I assumed you thought I was a bad driver. Speak harshly to me in a meeting, I assumed you thought I was stupid.
Thankfully, by 26, 28, 30 I began to realize the world does not revolve around me. That often, the way a person treats me is more about them.
I recently started selling and get daily reminders.
I call customers about upgrades. I talk in an upbeat, positive tone. I use a vetted approach. The reactions I get vary widely.
Some love my company and want to schedule a visit.
Others are kind but are not interested.
And a few…
Talk in hurried, dismissive tones,
Are too busy, even after saying they had 30 seconds to talk,
Hang up on me.
I get hurt. What did I say? Was I rude for calling?
Then I think of the different reactions. Some are eager, others are polite, and some are rude. There is always room for me to improve. However, the main variable leading to the different reactions is the other person.
Of course, I like the “positive” reactions (and upgrades!). And, I value the “negative” responses. They remind me that often how someone reacts is more about them. Whatever is left of my 23-year old self is thankful for the reminder!”
What I took away from this:
Always, always, always pay attention to what the other person is projecting and never, ever go into a sales conversation with just a canned “pitch.” Selling is a conversation. Acknowledge whatever vibe the other person is sending out and adapt. It is our responsibility to be the best communicator possible. And, finally, Leah is right. Don’t take anything the other person says too personally…whether negative or positive. I call this maintaining your emotional control in the situation. Leah’s observations are important to help others recognize that selling isn’t all about the salesperson. It is all about the other guy.
If you’ve gained an interesting perspective through your experiences in the workplace, or simply as a human being going about your life, I’d love to hear your story too. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.