Sales training is very much a part of sales. But where does talent for sales come in? How does your talent versus training stack up for sales? Why not consider this view of talent versus training for your sales success.
Sales training is perfect for improving your skills
One of the most important selling skills is listening. Most people are untrained listeners and that includes sales professionals! Getting trained on improving your listening is valuable training that will help you make more sales.
Good listeners hear the doubt or confusion in their prospects’ voices. These salespeople respond to clear up the confusion, rather than ignore it. Trained listeners pay attention to their gut instincts which serve them well in situations which aren’t clear cut.
Think of the last time you made a presentation to a buying committee composed of many influencers and decision makers. The salesperson with good gut instincts sees the hidden chains of authority and deference. The presentation changes to influence these key decision makers all based on gut instincts.
Talent is key.
Yes, you can train for skill, but without talent I suggest you’re wasting your time in sales. What does sales talent look like? Talented salespeople love selling. They think of it as helping people make great buying decisions. A talented salesperson enjoys learning more about his products or services and never thinks his products are inferior. Why would he think that anyway? A talented salesperson sells only products he believes in.
Another aspect to talent in sales is being a risk-taker. Every aspect of selling is filled with risk. Taking risks means you will have to make many, many decisions. The talented salespeople I see take risks comfortably all the time.
Here’s what risk looks like in sales. Should I make a cold call? The customer might not be in. The talented salesperson takes the risk and makes the call. Should I ask for current pricing information? The customer might get annoyed. The risk-taker asks while thinking, “So what. I’ll move on to another question if he tells me he can’t answer that.” Ultimately, a buyer can choose to buy or not which is the ultimate risk-taking experience that every salesperson faces.
Think about your talent as a sales professional. Are you talented? Consider another job if you’re not talented. . Then again, you might be better suited to other types of “selling” where you simply call people to set up appointments might be better suited to you because there’s less risk involved.
Talent to control your own destiny.
My first manager in sales had a theory. He gave little direction to newly hired salespeople. His theory was either you will sink or swim in sales. Either you figure it out, or you don’t. What this means is that new hires must be autonomous. No one is telling them what to do. They create their own schedules, who to call on, when to make sales calls, what to sell and how to sell. A micro-manager would drive these autonomous people crazy. This talent to be autonomous is essential for sales.
Yes, you can train for selling skills. But, you better have the talent for sales if you want to be successful. I maintain that salespeople are born, not made. Are you born for sales?