Temptations of the Sales Professional

In a recent article for The Business Journals titled, For Best Results, Avoid Temptation at Work, bestselling author Harvey Mackay provides a cautionary tale for all levels in the organisation about the pitfalls that tempt us daily. Per the usual for Mackay, it is an entertaining and interesting read.

Temptation is a desire to engage in short-term urges for enjoyment that threatens long-term goals, according to Wikipedia. My colleague, Rachael Bowling, addressed this very topic in her recent blog, The Need for Instant Gratification Undermines Our Quest for Greatness.

Considering MacKay’s insights through the lens of sales professionals, the most relevant temptations in our daily sales lives include:

  • Bad-mouthing the competition
  • Tooting our own horn
  • Talking more than we listen
  • Acting too quickly (i.e., going into “presentation” mode too quickly or asking for the sale too soon, before we have explored, listened to and understand the customer
  • Choosing harmony over conflict – giving the customer exactly what he/she asks for isn’t always the best course of action
  • Putting personal needs (ego) ahead of business needs (customer’s business or our own company)

Mackay points out, “We live in an instant gratification world, but studies show that people who delay their gratification succeed more in finances, relationships and achievements.” If we can rid ourselves of bad habits, leverage the selling skills that drive success and stay focused on creating value for the customer, long-term success will follow.

Read Harvey Mackay’s full article here: For Best Results, Avoid Temptation at Work

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