A skill that’s NOT even taught in elite MBA’s
Starting out your own business can be stressful, painful, daunting and exciting at the same time.
You need to craft an infinite number of skills, expertise & knowledge to get things done. They can range from market research, writing a business plan, technicalities on building a prototype, right markets to buy the materials from, outsourcing to the right freelancer/contractor, building the right network, finding & pitching to the potential investors, keeping your team/employees excited everyday, getting the best location at lowest rate , getting the best advice from experts, building document/pictorial/video content & marketing it effectively on social media, keeping track of your orders/purchases, customers’ compliance, HR, supply chain, finances, legalities, pivoting, maintaining quality, ethics, staying above competition and a ton of endless things.
I don’t wish to drag this further but before I open up THE SKILL, I need you to consider for a moment on the value & time we spend on these skills & expertise. We attend numerous workshops, conferences, webinars, presentations, programs and professional courses to master them just so we could perform better & be successful. I’ll like to make myself clear right here if i’m sounding a bit off-tune with my relationship to these areas of works; it’s very important that you should have knowledge on each aspect & do it correctly to achieve your goals, but this whole cycle starts and stays with one most important skill of all, if not mastered correctly by the entrepreneur/business owner/CEO/founder/co-founder(s) himself/herself, the business will go down for sure.
Nothing to be scared of as you have already been practicing this skill with so many different kinds of people at so many different kinds of occasions, that in order to improve it, you only need to be conscious about it at the least.
Let me cut the chase and unveil the skill of:
or to be specific, ‘entrepreneurial selling’
Now, you can curse me for taking exactly 299 words to bring the 5 lettered boring, useless, dull, lifeless & stupid word in front of your sinless eyes. But if you could bear with the remaining article, I can actually show you how it works exactly in bringing immense value to your personal & business development.
I want you to ask yourself “Am I a salesperson?” The majority will answer NO. Now I want you to think at least five different situations in which you were involved in to convincing the other person or party. Take your time…… think about it, it’s for your own good, I can wait……….Please, you won’t benefit if you skip this……………………………………………………………………Done?! … Great! I hope now you are able to see that most of your time is spent on convincing others on your dreams, ideas, plans, goals, capabilities, knowledge, promises, values, beliefs, point of view, advice, excuses, lies, and so on so forth. Being a salesperson doesn’t mean that you’re just selling your product or service to the customers.
Selling means to convince someone in exchange for something valuable (it could be money/time/attention/consideration or an action).
Let me take you through for the sake of those who are still skeptical or delusional critiques. One day, you feel like becoming an entrepreneur (because it’s cool, my best friend has launched his/her startup, I can be rich instantly, it suits my dictatorial mindset or that I have loads of useless pile of money which I can put in a startup without any business knowledge, experience & active work in it and become rich & a boss as a shortcut) whichever it is, the first thing you do is share the idea of your business with friends and hope that they love it. You’re making an effort to convince them that your idea is great, hence, surprise surprise, you’re selling them your idea. But here’s a thing about “friends”, they don’t want to discourage you or aren’t precisely your potential customers, and buys your idea easily. Then you take your idea (if you’re smart) to the potential customers and they beat you to death with their feedback. You either give-up or continue to build up the prototype of your idea. Either way, you’re stupid. Giving up needs no explanation and the latter is even worse because after spending loads of time & money, you will face your ignorant customers once again with hope that they could now embrace the holy grail that you’ve brought straight from the heavens. Guess what! For them to purchase your product/service, you will again need to convince and this time it will be even harder, whyyyy, because all this time you had been only working on your prototype and not the art of selling, then how can you expect them to be convinced the second time with the same lame story? In fact, you have produced a reality of your idea now over which they can mock explicitly. Hence, the end of a beautiful dream and a never dissolving belief of, ‘Pakistanis are stupid & only if it was America’. If only, you had crafted the art of selling, this wouldn’t have happened at all. With this skill, you get the power to influence others and sell your dreams, ideas, products etc. Mastering this skill can be so tempting that if used unethically can be dangerous too. So, be careful about that.
For the last time; let’s break the parts in order where selling is involved in your entrepreneurial cycle:
- Telling the idea to your friends, co-founders, employees and customers.
- Breaking it to your parents that you wish to pursue entrepreneurship & not a job (for something they had spent millions on your education to get)
- Pitching for seed investment from friends & family or an angel investor.
- Competing in startup competitions for securing funding.
- Scoring the best office/shop location at best price.
- Hiring the best employees/co-founders.
- Motivating your team/freelancers/contractors to give quality work & meeting deadlines.
- Fixing a meetup with a mentor/expert & extracting the best advice.
- Cold calling.
- Cold emailing.
- Approaching & demonstrating your product to your customers (in-bound & out-bound escalation).
- Customer retention.
- Handling your lawyer’s expenses/fees.
- Negotiating your supply chain costs. And so on…
It doesn’t just ends here, you can use this skill to almost anything in your life; in an interview, asking out for a date/marriage proposal, convincing your children to follow your orders/tasks/advice, taking a friend off a bad habit etc.
Unfortunately, even being in a sales mode all the time, we don’t realize it and never try to perfect it. It’s seldom to nil taught in even the best MBA programs in the world and definitely not in schools. They will teach you “sales force management’’ but that’s different.
Now, just imagine the levels of achievements you can soar with the art of selling. You will instantly improve yourself, your business and above all be indispensable forever. You can absolutely reduce the level of failure and a certainty to rise every time from a fall.
Luckily, there are some good online courses and books available to study from & learn this skill in precise step-by-step manner from your script to tonality to body language to closing a deal.
Oh Yes! That would be so obvious, how else did I know? ……God? …………
Haha, God bless you!
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