Today I want to talk about manipulation vs. service.
The biggest misconception the general public has about sales is that it’s about manipulating people.
Unfortunately, that’s the biggest sales myth.
When I had my first B2B sales job, I remember what my mentor and manager told me that time…
They told me that as salespeople, our biggest opponents were other salespeople—bad salespeople that is.
It’s the “bad” salespeople that give all salespeople a bad name.
I’m sure we’ve all experienced it before, where we’ve been on the other side of a transaction where a pushy salesperson tries to force or pressure a purchase on us—even though they know it might not be in our best interest.
We’ve all experienced that… and none of us like it!
It’s those experiences that we, ethical salespeople, need to overcome when working with prospects (and it all comes down to the trust factor)
Aside from the shitty salespeople whom we’ve all had the pleasure of experiencing…
The other reason why most people think sales is about manipulation is that that’s all that’s showed in the movies!
Truth be told:
It probably wouldn’t sell as many tickets if they made a movie about a super helpful salesperson that went around and solved everyone’s problems.
No, instead it’s much more profitable to make a movie was how high-pressure salespeople made millions by screwing good ol’ Americans out of their money.
That’s what gets sensationalized, so that’s what gets put in the media.
However, the truth is that the best salespeople are the BEST LISTENERS.
They are the best at helping people and solving their problems!
So if you could permanently encode that last sentence in your brain…
…you will be far ahead of 95% of other salespeople out there.
That’s just the truth.
Most salespeople (especially beginners) struggle with that fact the most.
They aren’t able to get out of their own way with their anxieties of what to say or hitting quota.
As a result, they take their focus off of solving a problem for the prospect—and put it on their own anxious needs.
I’m sure you can imagine how that goes…
But unfortunately, that’s the struggle that most beginner salespeople deal with.
It takes conscious effort to rewire your brain, and truly get a DEEP understanding of YOUR BODY (aka you DO this, not merely “know” this).
It takes conscious effort to put the focus off of yourself, off of hitting your quota, and instead put all your attention on HELPING the customer.
It’s simple, but for beginner sales reps, this is not always easy.
When you’ve been conditioned a certain way your entire life, it takes time and effort to unwind that and approach it.
My teacher David Deida and friend George Gaines used too say,
“If you’ve spent 20 years developing habits in a certain way, don’t expect to change those habits overnight.”
It’s going to take some time.
So understand that it will be a process, but if you’re willing to commit to truly putting helping people ahead of everything else—YOU will be a great salesperson.
Even now as I sell, I often remind myself to focus my intent in the right place.
It just matters so much.
They will NOT try to resist.
If you try to go in and manipulate them (which everyone can tell)
—you will be met with resistance.
Can’t you tell when someone is trying to sell you something versus trying to genuinely help you?
Well if you can tell, why would you expect otherwise for someone else?
That’s why it’s so important.
It really is the whole game.
Even when I take meetings now, I’ll put little reminders for myself to set my intention in the right place.
I’ll have tasks in my journal but instead of it saying, “Call with X Company,”
It’ll instead say “Call with X Company – Serve THEM!”
Just to remind myself of what my purpose is.
This might sound silly, but I feel like I have a divine obligation to serve the person in front of me.
Or at least I try. I definitely make a concerted effort to.
I believe that if you feel like you have an obligation to truly serve the person in front of you, you will not only be a much greater salesperson, but you’ll also make a much bigger impact.
And plus it just feels good to do the right thing by actually helping someone!
We all want to feel like we’re useful and of value to other people.
Contribution is a core need of ours.
In fact, that’s a huge reason why Saleslucky exists!
I want to give back and help other people who are along the journey of learning sales.
I know how challenging it can be when you’re just starting out, or you’re going through the growing pains of learning a new skillset.
I understand how daunting or frustrating it can be when you don’t have someone to show you the ropes. It’s hard to serve and help people when you feel like you need to help yourself first.
That’s why if you let me…
I’d like to personally guide you and mentor you in this area.
Self-education and getting help from mentors have been some of my greatest weapons.
They’ve helped to hone me and sharpen me to become a better and more skilled person.
They’ve forced me to level up and demand more from myself.
They’ve pushed me outside of my comfortzone that led me to wins that would take way longer for me to reach alone.
If this is something you’ve been thinking about, I might be able to help you reach your career goals faster.
The last thing you want is to go through a long process of trial-and-error!
Wherever you are in the journey of becoming an great salesperson—whether you’re just getting started out in sales, or even if you have experience and would like some support…
Would love to chat with you about how I may support you.
If you want to know what it’s like to be mentored by me, check out what Luis had to say about our recent virtual mastermind event we held:
“That’s when I started to realize that sales is the fuel to your business, fuel to your every business that there is. And not only that, but the skill itself is transferrable to all aspects of your life.”