13/04/2017 - 12:34

Mastering the art of non-selling

13/04/2017 - 12:34


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OPINION: Working hard to help your customers achieve their goals will go a long way to helping you succeed in your own pursuits.

Mastering the art of non-selling
Your attitude is clear to your customers, and can make all the difference to your sales performance. Photo: Stockphoto

OPINION: Working hard to help your customers achieve their goals will go a long way to helping you succeed in your own pursuits.

Everyone talks about how to sell. Not me. I stress ‘why they buy’, or ‘how to get people to buy’. It’s a much more powerful success model.

I even have a trademarked quote: ‘People don’t like to be sold, but they love to buy.’

But I know it is tough out there for most salespeople, fighting competition, struggling to be heard.

In order to struggle less, you must start the transition from ‘making a sale’ to ‘creating a buying atmosphere’.

Most salespeople are taught some system of selling. That’s where the hardship starts. They concentrate on the system and not the prospect. Salespeople are so busy trying to manipulate the selling process, that they disengage the buyer.

What is selling about? Let me give you the non-sales skills version. It is the version that leads to buying. These are the life skills that will help you rise to the top. None of them is about ‘how to close the sale’, but all of them are about how to be a success at selling. Forever.


One of the keys is understanding what you need to do to establish yourself and your position. It also means understanding the customer’s desires, combined with your excellence.

Helping others fill a need or dream

If you take joy in others’ success or fulfillment, you will be a success 100 times over.

Being your best at all times

Second best in sales is first loser. Best is everything in sales success.

Loving what you do

The most successful people in the world love what they do. The easiest ones to notice are the ones earning the most money. Athletes, actors, entrepreneurs. But money is not what creates ‘the love’. Teachers, mothers and farmers who love what they do rise to the top of their capabilities.

Having the best attitude

If you love what you do, it will show through your attitude – attitude is the energy from which successful people flourish.

Believe in your product/company/yourself

If you don’t possess these three elements, stop reading. The rest of this information will do you no good. Without belief, you’ll have no desire to do the hard work necessary to convert selling to buying.

Asking engaging questions

Questions must be thought provoking (not irritating). Questions must demand that the prospect be encouraged to consider new information (not tell you information you could have looked up yourself). Questions must be innovative and intelligent. Questions must be different than those asked by your competition. Questions are the key element in creating an ‘I need to buy this’ thought process on the part of your prospect.

Being idea-creative in advance (and on the spot)

Anyone will tell you that creativity is one of the few, true differentiators. Then the question is, how do you get more creative? The easy answer is to read one creativity book each quarter, prepare for your sales calls the night before with internet research, and practise by forcing yourself to come up with five ideas. Practising is the most important element – once you get in the groove and have the knowledge, the ideas will flow.

Know your customer

When you are trying to make a mental impact on the decision-making process, trying to persuade someone with facts about your features and benefits pales by comparison to proof that by taking ownership that the customer will increase productivity and profits.

Communication skills

Because your message must be compelling and transferable (understandable), you must master speaking and presentation skills. Join Toastmasters.

Serving with sincerity

Your actions are taken by the way they are perceived. Some people love to serve and go the extra mile. Some people serve with disdain and only go as far as they need to. Both philosophies are easily recognised.

Giving without expectation

This is among the hardest things for a salesperson to do, but it’s an important key to getting high-level acceptance and recognition.

Make yourself a resource

When you give value to prospects and customers, when you provide information they can benefit from beyond your product or service, you are creating the law of attraction. With valuable information that people use to benefit, profit, and produce, you become sought after.

Combine these attributes with self-education, and sales success is yours.

If you save this list, review it weekly for a year, select one of the elements each week and work on the skill, you will become a master. This is hard work. There’s an alternative. You can learn old-world selling skills.

Which do you think is more powerful?


Jeffrey Gitomer is an American author, professional speaker and business trainer, who writes and lectures internationally on sales, customer loyalty and personal development. © 2017 All rights reserved. Don’t reproduce this document without written permission from Jeffrey H. Gitomer and Buy Gitomer.


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