This week’s blog is by Terry R Yoffe, CPCC, PCC, a certified personal and professional development coach with TRY Coaching, LLC.
What do we mean when we talk about effective communication?
Sales people communicate every day and probably don’t give it a second thought. They put their mouths in gear and talk, eager to make the sale. But are they communicating successfully or are they just talking?
In today’s ever-challenging and uncertain marketplace, sales people have a much tougher row to hoe as sales are down dramatically. In this environment, can a sales person afford not to stop and consider how they are communicating with their current clients or, more importantly, with prospective ones?
By putting good communication skills to use, sales people can learn to communicate with and influence others. Over time, they will see the impact their words have on others from the listener’s perspective.
Lee Iacocca said: “We can have brilliant ideas, but if you can’t get them across, your ideas won’t get you anywhere.”
How many sales people have brilliant ideas that went nowhere because they couldn’t sell them to their client? What would it be like if they had the ability to influence or persuade another to embrace that idea and set it in motion?
Here are some basic communication skills to start putting into use immediately:
- Provide all the necessary information, taking care not to omit important parts of the message.
- Be direct, clear and congruent. Content, voice, tone and body language should all say the same thing. Body language makes up 50 percent of the impact of our message.
- Active listening means one thing: Hear what people are really saying.
- How well we listen has a major impact on our effectiveness and on the quality of our relationships with others.
- FACT: People only hear 25-50 percent of what we say and they hear it within the first 2½-5 minutes of communication.
Ask Powerful Questions
- Asking questions shows that we are listening and allows the sales person to glean new information and get clarity on what is being said.
How would your life change if you could successfully master these basic skills? How can you not make the investment to improve your communication? You will be amazed at the startling turn your sales efforts will take once you have learned to harness the power of effective communication.
On each sales call ask yourself this question: Are you communicating successfully and effectively to influence or are you just talking?