Stop Sucking at Sales

Most business owners suck at sales

I did too.  

I felt slimy, scared and just plain uncomfortable asking for money from potential clients.  

Three things changed that.

One, I realized that without money coming in, I wouldn’t be able to help people.

Especially if I wanted all of my bandwidth to be devoted to serving clients as best as I possibly could.  If I wanted to have three jobs in order to have a roof over my head, I’d be absolutely exhausted, only able to eek out the bare minimum to everyone.  That wouldn’t be good for them, nor would it be good for me.  At the end of the day, I only have a certain amount of bandwidth and can only serve a certain amount of people and I needed a certain amount of money to stay alive.  That made it pretty easy to assign a price tag to time.  

Two, I realized that time, resources, equipment, etc cost money. 

If I was independently wealthy, I could run things as a charity, but I’m not, so there needs to be compensation in order to do the things I wanted to do for people.  On a related note, money is a tool.  And the more money, the better, sharper and more shiny the tools could be.  This is a good thing for everyone.   

Three, and perhaps most importantly, I came to understand that people were coming to me so I could help them solve their problems. 

Each person had a different set of problems that could be solved in a different set of ways.  Each of those ways would involve a certain amount of time and a certain set of tools.  By understanding this, all I needed to do was to understand their problems and tell them the best way that I could solve them.  Then, I could tell them how much that would cost.  

So in the end, it really wasn’t about “selling” people things.  

It became a very linear, easy to implement process: 

Understand problems.

Illustrate solutions.

Assign a value.  

Of course, it is a little more intricate than that, as sometimes the value assigned to those things is outside of someone’s budget.  

But all that means is that I needed to either clarify how the solution was the best and only way to solve their problem, and that if it is outside their budget, that I can’t help them (or I’d devalue the service I’m providing to everyone else because my resources are now spread too thin).  

Or, I could show them how I did have another solution, that might not be the best fit, but would still help, at a lower rate.  

So, if you’re in a position where you have a hard time asking for money.  Reframe your perspective on it.  

You’re not trying to get the most amount of money from everyone.  You’re trying to help them the best way them (and the rest of the people you have resources for) in the best way that you possibly can.