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The seventh essential attribute for salespeople is Caring.
Caring follows the first attribute, self-discipline. The self-discipline that is the foundation of all future oriented goals allows the professional sales person to take the disciplined action for future oriented goals for others.
Caring follows the second attribute, optimism. Optimism enables caring by providing the belief that you can make a positive difference for others.
Caring follows the third attribute, competitiveness. In order to win, you must be competitive. To execute for the customer and make a difference you must care enough to do so.
Caring follows the fourth attribute, initiative, because it is often this ability to be proactive that demonstrates caring.
Caring follows the fifth attribute, resourcefulness. Resourcefulness allows the salesperson to find ways to make a difference and manifest their caring in a meaningful way.
Caring follows the sixth attribute, determination, because making a difference over the long haul requires a patient determination, especially in challenging times.
What Is Caring
Caring is a desire to create a positive outcome for others. Caring is a focused attention. It is a deep concern that someone else succeeds.
Caring is more than a desire. Caring is action-oriented. It can sometimes be heard in words, but it can only be experienced by actions. It is expressed in the actions that create a positive outcome for others, especially when it is difficult.
Caring in Sales
More than anytime in history, salespeople are more and more responsible for the outcome of the product or service they sell. Great salespeople care about their client’s outcomes, and they do what is necessary to ensure that the client can feel that they care.
Their caring is felt in the salespersons ability to listen to the client speak without thinking about what to say or what they might sell them.
It is felt through the salesperson’s patient discovery of what it means to create value for the client.
It is felt through the salespersons desire to include all stakeholders in the discovery process, to ensure that whatever solution he proposes will serve the whole organization.
Their caring is felt in their ability to make and keep their commitments, regardless of how large or small.
It is felt in their ability to bring the resources together to create a positive outcome for the client, and to build a solution worth buying before they commit to buying.
Caring is felt in the proactive actions the salesperson takes to ensure that a strong foundation to make a difference is in place.
It is felt in their ability to orchestrate their team after the sale, and by answering the phone to take the call when something goes wrong.
Caring is felt by the salesperson having a presence when they are needed, and by having a presence when there is no reason to.
Caring is felt in the salespersons willingness to have the tough and uncomfortable conversations. The conversations where the real outcomes may be achieved, and where the only upside for the salesperson is in the conversations ability to demonstrate how much they care.
When Caring is Missing
When caring is missing, the salesperson puts his desire to win the deal before creating the positive outcome for the client. When it is missing, the salesperson doesn’t listen to the client, and makes no attempt to understand how to create a positive outcome for the client before selling.
When caring is missing the salesperson proceeds with the sale, regardless of whether or not they have taken into consideration the needs of the stakeholders within the company. It appears as impatience and a desire to move forward before it is appropriate to do so.
Clients feel the lack of caring in missed commitments, promises made and not kept. They feel it in the little missed commitments too, knowing that the lack of ability to keep the little promises makes keeping the bigger promises less likely.
After buying form a salesperson that lacks caring, the client experiences the lack of caring in their failure to orchestrate their team to deliver the positive outcome, in excuses, and in unanswered phone calls.
The lack of caring is felt in their lack of presence.
When the prospect feels this lack of caring early enough, they choose a lesser product or service over a better one if it comes with a more caring salesperson; they feel the commitment from the salesperson to create a positive outcome and they decide accordingly.
Sales is about creating positive outcomes for others.
In order to create these positive outcomes for others, the salesperson has to have both the desire and the ability to do so. Caring is the desire to create these outcomes, and the force underlying the actions they take to ensure that the outcomes are achieved for their clients.
1. How do the prospects I call on know that I care?
2. Can they feel it in my actions as well as hear it in my words?
3. What could I do to ensure that my prospects and clients feel my caring throughout the sales process? After the sales is concluded?
4. Do they feel my presence? How do they know what actions I am taking on their behalf in orchestrating my team?
5. How do they know I care when something goes wrong?
6. Do my clients feel that their positive outcome comes before my sale?
For more on increasing your sales effectiveness, subscribe to the RSS Feed for The Sales Blog and my Email Newsletter. Follow me on Twitter, connect to me on LinkedIn, or friend me on Facebook. If I can help you or your sales organization, check out my coaching and consulting firm, B2B Sales Coach & Consultancy, email me, or call me at (614) 212-4279.
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