When you hear the word salesman, what do you think of. The mind wanders to images such as a used car salesman, a clerk at Wal-Mart, or the kid next door hawking CutCo knives. The term salesman doesn’t get a lot of respect.
And yet every leader needs to hone their sales skills. They need to become an expert salesman to get the job done.
“How can this be?” you may ask. Truth be told, everyone is a salesperson at some point or another, Daniel Pink even sales this in his book To Sell Is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others.
Every leader needs to be a salesman. There’s three reasons leaders need to learn to sell.
1. You have to sell the leadership vision: The vision of any organization is vital to it’s success. We must have a clear idea of where we want to go or we run the risk of perishing.
Once you’ve created your vision, you must be able to sell it to your team and get them to BUY into the vision. This means you’ve got to sell what you’ve got.
2. You have to sell your leadership ability: There are few people stepping up to be leaders. And the ones who aren’t stepping up are looking for leaders to lead them.
I know you’ve stepped into the role of leader. That’s great. It’s one of the first steps you needed to take.
Now that you’re a leader, you will have to constantly sell yourself and your ability to lead well. Practice great leadership and show them you know how to lead.
This will help them to buy into your leadership.
3. You have to sell the organization: People will take a job for the money. But that won’t keep them with the company long-term.
Leaders have to sell the organization to their team to keep them around. Let them know what the company is doing, how the company benefits their lives, and what the company can do.
When your team sees the company as more than an entity, they’re more likely to stick with it.
As you can see, sales is an important part of leadership. You can get your team to buy into the vision, into your leadership ability, and into the organization.
When you’ve combined all three, you’ll create a formidable team that’s ready to work hard and seek success.
Question: Why else is sales important in leadership? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.