So you’re new to the sales game, you’re young, eager, and ambitious. You’re looking to make your mark, to set the world on fire. Well the old 80/20 rule tells us that most sales reps are average. Not looking to be “average”, you wonder, what does it take for a young new hire to become a Sales Superstar?
Earlier this week, I started working with one of client’s newly hired group of sales folks. Understand that by “new”, I mean brand spanking new, deer in the headlights, sales neophytes. As day one came to a close, the VP of Sales came in to wrap up the session and to offer his thoughts and perspectives on the day. As he was finishing his remarks he turns to me and says, “In your opinion, what are the three key things to remember most, if you want to be a sales superstar over the long-term?”
I’m thinking to myself, “wow, three things, only three”? Now there are probably, at minimum, 20 or 25 different things that I could say. Mentally I’m scrambling, not wanting to disappoint, so I reached down deep into the Zim-Master’s (that’s me) magical bag of sales wisdom, and here’s what I came up with. (paraphrased)
#1 – LEARN AS MUCH AS YOU CAN AS FAST AS YOU CAN! Learn as much as you can about your company, the competition, and your marketplace. Learn as much as you can about selling and all the different aspect involved. Adopt a motto of ABL, (Always Be Learning)and commit to “Continuous Innovation . . . Continuous Improvement”. The game of sales is constantly changing and involving so do whatever it takes to be at the top of your game at all times. Remember knowledge is power and to steal a line from my 3rd grade teacher, “The more you know, the further you will go”.
#2 – WORK YOUR ASS OFF! I was fortunate that I developed a healthy work ethic from a very early age. (I had my 1st job when I was 12) Yes, I believe in working smart but if you want to successful, if you truly want to be a superstar, you have to put in the time and effort. Look at any professional, (Doctor, Lawyer, Athlete, etc) and they will all say that most of their success was attributed to hard work. Out work your peers, your competitors, and anyone and everyone else. If you want to be more than just an ordinary average sales guy, you have to really work at it! So work your ass off!
# 3 – BE AUTHENTIC! Nobody likes a phony! The best advice I ever received was to be myself. Sales Superstars come in all shapes and sizes and from all kinds of different backgrounds. Be who you are and not who or what someone else might think you should be. I’m certainly not telling you to ignore all the great advice that the sales gurus, numerous sales trainers, and your sales mangers are telling you. What I am saying is take the information, the methodologies, and various selling techniques and mold them into your style. You need to be comfortable in your own skin before your clients will be comfortable with you.
It’s not too hard to pinpoint the difference between average performers and poor ones. The challenge is discerning the difference between good and great.
What makes some sales people superstars and others mediocre? “What’s differentiates the great ones? As a young gun, how do you get to the top? Start with these tidbits from the Zim-Master’s magical sales bag of wisdom.
Please feel free to share your thoughts and comments.
I used to know a guy named Bruce Zimmerman, but I like “Zim-Master” much better 🙂 I really enjoyed this post Bruce. You are very correct in saying that there is a list of 20-25 things that we could tell brand new reps. You did an excellent job of expanding on only 3! Being authentic really caught my eye. Be yourself, be the individual that you are meant to be, and don’t try to be somebody else! Thanks again!
Awesome advice Bruce! I’m not sure how you were able to narrow it down to three key components, on the spot, like you did!!