Selling is to an organization what food, water, and oxygen are to the body. Businesspeople sometimes exhibit a disdain at the notion of being labeled a “salesperson”, but this is a critical error. This disdain is a result of never taking the time to learn the mechanics and true art of selling.
Most salespeople typically learn a few fundamental skills in the first 90 days or so—and then spend the rest of their careers operating under this initial, foundational knowledge. If a boxer took that approach, he would never make it to a paid fight, regardless of his natural abilities.
Despite the myth, no one is “born a salesman.” I am an expert in sales, but trust me I was not born a salesperson. Take every opportunity and free moment you have to learn the art of selling. Use the time you spend commuting to and from work each day to listen to material on generating revenue for yourself and your company.
Vincent Van Gogh—one of the greatest artists who ever lived—sold only a single painting of the hundreds he painted during his lifetime. This was an individual who produced some of the greatest art in the last 2,000 years, but because of his inability or unwillingness to sell, his brilliance didn’t generate any revenue.
Despite what you may have been told, everyone sells at one time or another. Even A-list movie stars who are at the very top of their careers have to assist in selling their movies; if no one buys tickets, the studios will quit making movies with them. The president of the United States sells his or her way to the White House and, once there, must continue to sell in order to get his programs in place and get reelected.
So whatever your job title or position may be, I plead with you to learn everything you can about this great lost art of selling.