Right now I would be a terrible a salesperson. This is because I am gutless and meek when it comes to selling something to someone. I couldn't even sell an idea if my life depended on it, and forget selling products!
When I was nine years old, my mom decided that my brother and I should earn our own pocket money. She arranged for us to sell magazines in our neighborhood as it was summer time and schools were off. Each day, my brother who was a year and a half younger to me, would end up selling more copies than me. I would hardly sell a copy or two, and it was a rare occasion when I sold three! Naturally, this only happened once.
The problem was that I just couldn't bring myself to ask people to buy. I could only request and that is not how salesmen function. They coax, convince, manipulate and close the deal!
I used to knock the door and croak in my meek voice, 'Would you like to buy a magazine?' More often than not, I would have doors slammed on my face. On the other hand, my brother would use a line like, 'You must buy this last copy before it's sold out!' or 'You wouldn't believe the recipes they have in the cooking section! It's a must-have!' Housewives would be impressed by him and usually end up buying.
Thanks to this awful childhood sales experience, I never tried my luck at it again. I was always into customer care and concentrated on solving customer problems and queries. I was absorbent and mellow by nature and thus could take in a surprising amount of heat from irritated customers. This natural quality of mine paid off in my line of work.
Now if I have to switch careers and become a salesperson, I am sure I would be awful at it! I still have no gumption and cannot imagine convincing someone on my own to buy a car. (I work in a car dealership and am Manager Customer Services!)
I am sure I would need extra coaching and sales tutorials to be able to sell stuff on my own. Being a salesperson is an art, and I believe it's 70 percent learnt and 30 percent God-given. Some of us have a natural talent or skill for selling and others don't. Sales training is definitely something I need.
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