Tag Archives: strengths

Know Your Sales Strengths

By Guy Swan (LimeTree Online)

effective sales graphEveryone is different. Our differences are what add color to the rich fabric of life. If we were all the same, the world we live in would be very bland indeed. But can our variations in characteristics affect our selling ability?

As Colleen Stanley mentioned in her article, a sales position may not have been your chosen profession, but there is nothing stopping you from being great at it. And I am a strong believer in knowing yourself, as it is only then you can harness your strengths, and improve your weaknesses, to optimize your sales performance.

There are many tools available in this day and age to help you improve. Yet the best starting block would be to have your existing skills assessed. People tend to be naturally competent in many of the 5 core sales skills, but not all of them. Understanding where your strengths lie can help focus your sales approach, and cognizance of your weaknesses will only help to improve on them as you progress.

Continue reading Know Your Sales Strengths

Turning Your Weakness into a Strength

By Kirstin Carey – an award-winning speaker and consultant, believes that if you’re not having fun, then you’re doing something wrong. 

strengths from weaknessesIn the 1984 Presidential race, 73-year-old Ronald Reagan ran against much younger candidate Walter Mondale.  According to experts, Reagan’s age was his biggest weakness and Mondale was expected to use it to his advantage in the televised debate.  Reagan was asked point blank if he expected to have trouble “keeping up” for a second term as the oldest president in history.  Without skipping a beat, Reagan responded by saying, “Not at all. And I want you to know that I will not make age an issue in this campaign.  I am not going to exploit, for political purposes, my opponent’s youth and inexperience.”

Not only did Reagan get a laugh from the audience and from Mondale, he won the election in a landslide leaving the age issue far behind.

HOW TO MAKE THIS TECHNIQUE WORK FOR YOU

How can you use this reverse philosophy to your advantage when marketing and selling your services?

First, list what you believe to be your strengths and weaknesses.

Second, look at the list of weaknesses.  Is it something you can fix without a lot of effort?  If so, than fix it.  If not, is it something that can be turned around to work in your favor?  How can your weakness be seen as a strength?

EXAMPLES

1) If one of your weaknesses is that you don’t have a lot of commercial experience, but want to get into commercial design marketing, you could turn this weakness around by pointing out that you have a “fresh and unique” perspective on design since you are not bogged down by the standard old way of doing things.

In your marketing you really want to highlight words such as “new”, “unique”, “fresh” and other words that would appeal to buyers who don’t want the same old thing and want to impress others with their outstanding design.

2) Perhaps you are much younger than your competitors.  You could positively exploit your age by pointing out that you have the most recent education in the newest techniques, using the latest technology.

Point out the flaw or weakness and show why it’s a positive.

3) One of my favorite “weakness-into-a-strength” marketing campaigns is from Avis car rental company.  The slogan is: “We’re number two. We try harder.”  How great is that?

4) Is your company much smaller than your competitors?  Highlight that your company is smaller and therefore your customers aren’t “numbers” like they are in the “big firms.”  Your employees are happier and are treated “like family,” so there’s less turnover.  Turn your perceived negative into strength.

SPECIAL BONUS

Think beyond your immediate reaction of negativity and make it a positive angle to market your services.  This approach has a fantastic hidden bonus to it, too!

It helps to increase your ethos in the mind of the customer.  According to Aristotle and Socrates, ethos is one of the three key components to persuasion.  Roughly translated, ethos is the customers’ perception of your credibility based on your ability to deliver what the customer wants based on his beliefs and his values.  Essentially, the customer wants you to act in his best interest over yours.

That’s why you get an icky feeling when the stereotypical used car salesman, sporting a worn tweed jacket, cocks his head, shoots you a sly grin and asks, “So… what can I do to get you in this car today?”  He clearly isn’t interested in your needs, wants, or values.  He just wants to sell you a car and make his monthly quota.  Yuck.

The approach to admitting to a perceived weakness, then turning it around into a positive is a triple bonus for your ability to persuade the customer to buy from you.  First, it eliminates a negative.  Second, it gives you a new positive.  Third is raises your ethos with the customer for pointing out the negative, and therefore seemingly putting your customers’ needs above your own.  And, it doesn’t give anyone that yucky feeling. (Which is a fourth bonus, right?)

It’s a win for everyone.  Fun, huh?

If you are having difficulty handling a perceived negative or trying to set yourself apart from your competition, than try flipping your weaknesses into strengths.  It may just turn into the biggest strength you have!

Workplace Strengths & Weaknesses

By Leyla Norman, eHow Contributor

Sales Team Leveraging Strengths

Make the effort to grow your workplace strengths and to turn your weaknesses into strengths. Developing a strong workplace personality with positive characteristics takes time and deliberate effort. Use every opportunity to turn what you do well into something you do better.

Help

  • Use your strengths in the workplace to help others. If you have a good work ethic or are a good problem solver, for example, show up to work 10 minutes early to help set up the restaurant or office you work in for the day. Stay another 10 minutes after your shift ends (if allowed by company policy) to help a co-worker with some work or a problem he has to solve. To develop your ability to help others, look for an opportunity to be of service to someone. Ask the person politely if they would like help before you jump in to assist them, however. Do this at least once per shift to get better at it.

Attitude

  • Attitude plays an important role in whether we enjoy our jobs or not. It also affects how our co-workers feel during their work day. It is definitely more pleasant to be around those who are happy than it is to be around those who are constantly negative. If you generally have a good work attitude, share it with others. Smile as often as possible, and spread your good cheer by offering encouraging words. Build a good attitude by avoiding complaining about things on the job or specific people at work. When you are tempted to do so, keep your mouth closed. When you next open it, make it a point to say something positive, even if it is commenting on the weather in a positive way or asking someone if they have had a good day. Others will appreciate your efforts.

Communication

  • Good communication is vital in any workplace. Whether you tell an incoming assistant teacher how things went with the preschool classroom you help with in the morning, write an email to your boss about a problem you are facing or communicate orally with a client over the phone about a project your company is doing, communication is an extremely important part of your success on the job. Develop your ability to communicate by talking more openly with your supervisors about both good and bad things that happen at work, reviewing emails carefully for respectful tone and conciseness before you send them or by taking and delivering accurate messages when you take phone calls for others at work. Each opportunity to talk with someone at work is a chance to improve your communication skills.

Self-Motivation

  • Successful employees look for something to do when there is nothing to do. If you are naturally self-motivated, you would be leading by example, without words but with plenty of action. You are looking for productive ways to fill empty time at work, perhaps filling out your schedule for the next day or calling customers to see if they need anything. You work to manage your time well and prioritize your tasks according to the most pressing. If you need to develop this skill, start by asking your supervisor if there is anything else you can do when your work is finished. Look around you to see what tasks need to be completed that have not been done yet.