My Medical Device Sales Career
For the past two weeks I was vacationing with my family. We went camping, which I love to do. I enjoy everything about camping – time with my family, the sights and sounds of nature and all the new experiences that come with travel.
Now I know that everyone is not a camping enthusiast. It is beyond my understanding as to why this is the case, but I do accept it. I am also convinced that not all sales professionals love being in sales. I have an even harder time reconciling this fact because we spend so much of our time and energy on the activities and demands of our positions. Shouldn’t this be a labor of love?
When I was a brand new manager I went out to work with one of my representatives. The secretary in our first call greeted us in a very cheery voice and asked “How are you today?” My representative responded in droll tones “Well, you know, it’s a Monday…”
Given the wide spectrum of choices ranging from zero business being generated to wild success beyond all expectations, what do you think the result of that call was? You’re right! ZERO! Why this person was even in sales is something I never quite understood.
A manager friend of mine once said that selling is the transfer of enthusiasm from one person to the next. How can one transfer enthusiasm if there is none inside? How can anybody have enthusiasm if they don’t love what they do and have a passion for their products, services and what they offer as a professional?
Why all the focus on loving what we do, enthusiasm, and the like? Isn’t the profession of Sales all about product knowledge, probing and closing skills, territory management and all the other professional aspects of our jobs? Why, yes it is! It is also about being the sales professional that excites your customers and creates an expectancy that every interaction is going to be positive and productive for your customers. It’s about establishing a selling environment that is conducive to selling and that starts with you and me!
There is no way we can effectively accomplish our goals if we are not in love with what we do. Oh, you can do if for the short haul, but we’re talking about the long haul. We’re running the marathon to win, right?
How do you know if you love selling and the profession of Sales? Do you groan every time there is mention of sales training? What about the prospect of role playing? Do you look at leads as an opportunity or an obligation? Do you actively look for ways to improve your knowledge and skill sets or do you simply quit at five o’clock (or sooner)?
What about your customers? Do they have reason to look forward to seeing you or do they cancel appointments and try to avoid you?
If you truly love what you are doing it is evident to all those around you. If you find yourself a little “love challenged” then it’s time to rekindle the flame. Take a course, read a book, reach out to some successful representatives in your organization. Challenge yourself to rediscover the enthusiasm that has slipped away.
What you will find is that once you have an appropriate amount of true, deep down joy it will ooze out and get on your customers. Trust me, they won’t mind a bit! You’ll find yourself having much more productive calls.
Oddly enough, you will also find that brushing up on techniques and skills will be something you look forward to. People who take pride in their professional skills and abilities seek out ways to continuously improve. As a result, they are that much more effective when working with customers. It’s an upward spiral that takes you to new levels of success and rewards.
As you set forth to conquer your world this week, be sure you have the flame burning brightly. Love what you do and let it show.
By Kevin Onarecker