“True leadership is servanthood. Put the interests of others at the center of your decisions.”
I would like for you to think about the people who have been leaders in your life. One of the fascinating aspects about the people who lead us, whether they are good, poor or indifferent is the fact we learn a thing or two from all of them.
Some teach us how to lead while others demonstrate how not to lead. What makes the difference in a strong leader versus a weak one? Is it their personality? Is it their skill set? It their life experience they possess? While all of these are indeed factors there is one metric which I believe sets apart strong leaders from weak ones…
The best leaders have developed a well-thought out approach for leading others.
SALES REPS WHO LEAD
Let’s examine this from a sales perspective for a moment. True leadership as a sales rep is the ability to affect change and influence people inside your current clients and prospective client’s places of business. Therefore, you as the coach need a game plan just as a general needs a plan of attack or someone running for office needs a platform. As a sales rep, if you are truly going to lead others; your clients and prospects then I suggest you bring a proactive thought process to how you lead.
LEAD WITH THE HEART – SERVANT LEADERSHIP AS A SALES REP
There is a world of difference between being a vendor who takes orders (managing your lease end portfolio) and being viewed as a valued peer.
Do you view and treat your customers as customers or clients?
A vendor or customer mindset defaults to a defensive or reactive sales position, missing opportunities to help and to increase your value by being able to build a dependable, mutually profitable relationship.
Truly successful sales reps lead with the heart and seek to serve their clients and prospects. The most high-valued sales relationships will be peer-to-peer in nature. This is a huge mental and strategic shift most sales reps will find exhausting.
Adopting a servant leadership mindset takes a conscious effort by learning and committing to develop self effectiveness in areas such as:
I am forever grateful to Billy Burnett and Charles McPadden two of the most genuine guys I know from one of the finest organizations ever to exist Joni and Friends. Not only were these two gentlemen clients of mine but they became mentors and truly great friends. These two gentlemen played a huge role in why I feel so strongly about sales reps leading with the heart.
I encourage sales reps to think about stewardship with your current clients and prospects. Make the commitment to grow relationships not just for the sales sake but for truly, genuinely and with a burning desire wanting to build a great community of clients.
Servant sales leadership is a journey. It is conducive to sales reps with a grit and growth mindset.
3 WAYS A SERVANT LED MINDSET HELPS SALES REPS CRUSH QUOTA
It’s not what we say as sales reps but what we actually do, this is what matters.
FIRST, SEEK TO ALWAYS PUT YOUR CLIENT FIRST
You need to put your clients and prospects perspectives and needs far ahead of your own to give you a fighting chance. Putting them first is really not complicated. It’s about making each client and future client feel as important and valued as they are. If they need help, there should be absolutely no hesitation to offer the help. If there is a question, every effort should be made to answer it to their satisfaction. If there is a complaint about your product or your service, every effort should be made to rectify the problem immediately. Client satisfaction should be at the forefront in any reasonable situation.
Sales reps, instead of worrying about being interesting, we need to first be interested. Develop empathy for your clients and prospects. Start to gain an understanding of what motivates them and how this can align to what you can deliver. Always under-promise and over-deliver. This is the key!
SECOND, SEEK TO UNDERSTAND FIRST THEN BE UNDERSTOOD
Listen closely to your clients and prospects. Professional sales reps seek to understand the needs, concerns, desires, issues, challenges and current situation within their perspective clients and prospects business. An amateur sales rep sells products, a professional sells a solution to the problem.
By seeking first to understand, you can turn a transactional opportunity (like turning your lease base) into a transformational opportunity. I encourage sales reps to get on the same side of the table looking at the problem instead of staying on opposite sides of the table staring at each other.
The litmus test – ask your clients this question…
What is the difference I have made to your business?
When we as sales reps sincerely and deeply understand our clients this will open the door to more creative solutions. This becomes huge stepping stones to a synergistic and profitable partnership.
THIRD, SEEK TO OPEN UP CONVERSATIONS
If you truly want to get to know your clients and prospects then take the sales hat off, roll up your sleeves and engage in healthy conversation. Here lies the issue – How many sales reps have truly meaningful conversations with their clients outside of the selling process?
The best sales reps know how to bring conversation out in the open. It is about uncovering the conversation your client or prospect is having with themselves. In doing so this enables open and honest communication to what is really going on which provides the freedom to engage in win-win situation.
If your client’s don’t feel like they are being heard and understood, they may withhold critical information as to where they really are within their buying decision, which may diminish or eliminate your ability to impact the outcome.
Focus on developing conversations, not sales campaigns. It is not about your agenda, it is about opening up human to human conversation. It is not about you it is about helping your client. Develop a sincere desire and demonstrate you are interested in your client’s world and what motivates them.
Seek to open up more conversations. Successful sales reps are far more effective with time, patience and their energy levels than the average sales rep is willing to invest. They recognize there’s something more important when it comes to closing the deal – listening to what the buyer isn’t telling them.
IN THE END – WIN THE WAR
If you want to crush it in sales, I encourage sales reps to develop a servant sales mindset. Sales reps who help out the most will win the most.
In a world where sales reps are viewed upon with negativity, an authentic, real-deal approach is a breath of fresh air. It may result in losing a few sales battles here or there, but those sales reps who put their clients first no matter what are all but guaranteed to win the war.
I understand where you all are coming from. I have walked a day in a life of your shoes.
I am fully committed to helping your sales team integrate social selling into your current sales process to grow net-new business. I want you to get results. This is why I am passionate about doing this the right way.