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9 Superpowers I got from Being in Sales

9 Superpowers I got from Being in Sales

After being in sales for a number of years, I’ve realized that I am truly glad for getting into sales.

Most people will tell you it’s a good idea to have a few years of experience in sales…

And it’s true!

However most people choose not to take a sales job…

For those who have…

Here are some sales super powers I’ve developed since doing sales (and you can too)…

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1. A 6th Sense for Motive

A big part of sales is learning to align intent and motivation on behalf of buyers.

You must understand why prospect A wants your solution, what motivation he or she might have…

And you must understand prospects B and C, and their motivations for wanting to bring your solution onboard…

Then you’ve got to align them nicely and help everyone get what it is they want.

As a result of that, it’s made me more inherently aware of intentions and motivations.

I feel like it has given me a better business sense…

Like I’m unconsciously gauging what an individual’s motive may be, and what might be his or her levers, and how he/she may be incentivized.

I think it’s made me aware of people’s intentions and what makes them “tick.”

2. A better understanding of myself (and others)

I think with sales, it’s inevitable for us need to understand psychology and motivation….

Throughout that journey of study….

I’ve found that the more honest I was able to be with myself…

The better I was able to understand others.

At the end of the day, people are only motivated by a handful of things…

Yes, your product may have special features that “no other product ever had…

But really, there are only a few things we human’s are motivated by…

  • Survival
  • Sex
  • Food
  • Shelter
  • Wealth/Possessions
  • Community/Connection
  • Prestige/Status
  • Legacy
  • Providing for Family

There’s probably a few other ones….

But there’s not a whole lot of other CORE motivations people have….

Understanding human psychology, not only the part of us that rationalizes and says “logical” things…

But the part that still thinks we’re cavemen surrounded by saber toothed tigers…

Understanding THAT part… makes ALL the difference.

You’ll understand how human’s are not RATIONAL or LOGICAL creatures AT ALL.

You’ll know how ALL of our decisions are pretty much made emotionally or subconsciously.

Understanding these parts about psychology inevitably allows you to understand yourself and your fellow human beings better…

I actually wrote a full post about this here.

3. Self Confidence

I gotta be honest.

Sales helped me develop my self confidence, for sure.

Yeah yeah, sales people in movies are always portrayed as loud, gregarious, and outspoken.

That’s cool and all –

But I think sales helped me develop my self confidence through just getting better at something.

Sales is tough.

To stick with it and excel at it is tougher.

Add on top of it being something that you might have felt was a weak area or pain point in your life?

Yeah, you have your work cut out for you.

But you know what? If you conquer it,.. how can you NOT have self confidence?

If you turn a weakness of yours into a strength?

I think that’s why sales helped develop my self confidence…

Because I decided I wanted to improve an area of my life…

I went out…

And I got it…

That’s helped me strengthen my self confidence and that is truly priceless if you ask me.

4. An ability to navigate conversations

This is a cool skill –

After being in so many sales conversations, you learn how to “control” the conversation…

Direct it to the topic you want without it being overt or disruptive…

You learn to control the conversation subtly by mastering the use of questions….

All this comes in pretty handy in day to day conversations.

It’s like you have an awesome tool belt with things you couldn’t do before.

Picture it like Batman’s tool belt for sales… lol

5. A comfort in engaging with people

This might sound silly, but I feel like most people are uncomfortable with engaging with other people nowadays.

Maybe I’m wrong.

I feel like everyone is on their phones and face to face interaction (especially among strangers) is becoming a lost art of sorts.

One thing about sales (and having to make cold calls – all the time)…

Is that it’s made me more comfortable with engaging people.

That doesn’t mean I like small talk…

But it’s made it 100% okay for me to go up and strike a conversation with someone I don’t know if I wanted to…

That’s a benefit that I feel good about. 

6. An awareness that taking action = results

It’s not hard to make the connection that taking action = more results.

It’s like a hunter back in the day….

You don’t hunt?

Family has no meat to eat.

In sales?

You don’t sell? 

No commission checks.

It’s fairly quick for a new salesperson to learn that their efforts are IMMEDIATELY tied to their rewards….

I feel like in the corporate world – there’s an overall culture of the employee trying to “get” as much from their employer as possible…

But in sales, you “get” what you earn….

It’s the RESULTS that speak… not the number of hours you’ve sat at your desk.

7. A stronger ability to “Make Shit Happen”

Hey look,

Sales is very much a “make it happen” kind of job…

Sometimes the odds look bleak,

And the conditions might not always be in your favor…

(in fact they never will be 100%)

But you still have to go out there, get results, and make shit happen.

Management doesn’t care how, and management doesn’t care about excuses…

They just want to see sales reps bring in the dollars tied to their quota.

In a lot of companies, there is this unsung mantra…

“Revenue cures all.”

Meaning,

Sales reps who bring in large amounts of revenue can get away with a lot of other stuff…

For example,

Coming in at whatever time they want…

If they come into the office at all…

Be able to work from home or remotely…

Basically,

Reps who can consistently crush their number… are HIGHLY valued… obviously…

But the most valued reps have developed a strong ability to “make shit happen.”

Make something out of nothing, so to speak.

It’s not about your resources, it’s about your resourcefulness.

8. An ability to listen to conversations in slow motion

This ties in with point number 4, an ability to navigate conversations…

Having have been in many sales conversations,

I now sometimes feel like 1-on-1 conversations in real life are easier to manage and navigate…

As if I know what might happen next or can see it coming in slow motion…

Like Neo in the Matrix…

Neo ducking bullets in slow motion in The Matrix

9. Listening

This might not sound like a very “sexy” superpower…

But it is really awesome…

Sales has made me a muchhhh better listener.

And it’s also made me understand the power of listening.

I’m sure you’ve heard the expression…
“We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak”

And it’s really true…

By listening more than we talk we can learn so much more of other people, whether that’s our prospects or other people in our lives…

Also,

I didn’t realize this until recently, but when we listen deeply to other people…

And really pay attention…

They will tend to listen to us deeply when it’s our time to speak or share (about our products & services…)

Plus just listening intently and really being present with someone will make us immediately stand out from the pack

Because focus and really giving someone your undivided attention is something of a rare commodity these days..

Lastly,

By listening intently, you’re able to listen to what’s being said underneath the words

You’ll be able to listen for what’s not being said… which often times is equally if not more important.

You’ll be able to listen for tonality and energetic cues that will give off vibes to you that you can pick up…

Simply, you’ll be able to read people better.

All of these qualities will develop in you as you continue on your journey as a sales professional.

Or maybe they’ve already developed in you to some extent.

You can be sure that as you progress along this journey, those skills and abilities will only continue to sharpen as you remain dedicated to the craft.

You might develop some “super powers” that are different than mine…

In fact, I’m sure your list will be a little different than mine…

That’s because we are all different people,

With different strengths, weaknesses, and natural talents.

One thing is really cool though…

When I started out this journey in sales, I didn’t expect so many cool treasures awaited me on the other end of this journey

(not that my journey is done, far from it, I’m only beginning!)

As I’m writing this article, I feel very grateful for these gifts… because some of them are really hidden treasures.

I had no idea I had these gifts/skills within me….

And as I wrap up this post now, I am grateful for how God/The Universe works….

I know it sounds cliche, but…

It took me embarking on this journey to discover these hidden treasures that were buried inside me all along.