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If you are considering a job in sales, or are already employed in this capacity, you might think that following some pre-set script or having a game show host personality is the best ways to succeed in your job.

As it turns out, the cookie cutter approach to sales is probably not the best way to get more customers. Instead, by embracing what makes you different and using your life experiences to connect with customers, you can be an amazing salesperson who lands lots of new clients.

For tips on how to leverage your unique differences in your sales job, consider this:

There is No Such Thing as a “Winning Sales Personality”

A prevalent myth in the sales industry is that only the outgoing, uber-friendly, persuasive people who may be more glib than genuine can be good at their jobs. While there are companies that hire sales people who exhibit these character traits, claiming that there is a true “winning sales personality” is a complete myth. In fact, if a customer is on the shy side, coming at her like a freight train may cause her to flee the store and never shop with you again.

Focus on the Person, Not the Sale

Instead of using a one-size-fits-all approach to dealing with potential customers, it is far better to look at clients as the individuals that they are. Instead of launching into a sales pitch, ask clients about their background and interests. If you learn that you share a hometown, hobby or favorite sports team in common, you’ll have an easy, instant connection. By using this approach, you will keep the sales talk on a more personal level rather than one that is aggressive and looking to only sell a product. 

One company that does this “people first, sales later” approach is Amway. The company uses a community-based business model to leverage their employees’ unique life experiences. Their direct sales model enables a huge corporation like Amway to feel like a local business because it includes employees who understand their communities, and can connect on a personal level to the people they are selling to. Because of this simple connection, customers can comfortably ask hard questions that may have otherwise kept them from making a purchase, such as “Is Amway a scam?” or “are the products ethically sourced?”

People Can See Through Fake Personas

While you may be tempted to package yourself as a certain type of salesperson, remember that people can see right through a fake personality and will probably end up walking away. Instead, focus more on knowing yourself and what your best skills are—this, in addition to understanding your company’s products and services inside and out—are far better ways to land a sale.

Just Be Yourself

It is reassuring to know that you don’t have to pretend to be someone you are not to do well in sales. Even if you have a naturally outgoing personality, connecting with customers, sharing your unique stories and background and seeing clients as real people rather than ways to boost your bottom line will go much farther than adopting a cookie cutter approach to your job.

 

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