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SalesLinks Bulletin Archive

Jun 29-Jul 5, 1998

THE FIVE ESSENTIAL SKILLS OF SALES AND SELLING
#1. Personal Development

jack carrollby Jack Carroll

I don't think I've ever seen it in print anywhere else, but there are five separate and distinct skills or disciplines that are practiced in sales and selling. They are:

  • Personal development
  • Personal and professional organization
  • Communication and persuasion
  • Relationship building
  • Knowledge of your selling situation (products, problems, people, and processes).

If you are going to make a good living in sales, you will need to master these skills.

The first of these is personal development or—as I call it—the "operating system." The skills that make up personal development are important for the same reason as the operating system on computers. It controls and affects almost everything else. When the operating system isn't working right, none of the applications (the other cornerstone skills) run right.

The key areas of personal development are building a positive attitude, creativity, and self esteem. Self esteem includes self awareness, self acceptance, self responsibility, self assertiveness, living consciously, and personal integrity.

Learning and practicing your own personal development skills is a lifetime commitment in sales. The challenges of understanding and managing yourself are always evolving and having an effect on your results and outcomes.

It is important for you to recognize that when you are having a problem in any area of decision making, commitment, or fulfillment, the source is almost always in one or more of these areas of personal development.

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Sales Tip and Practice
Do you have a specific program of practice and self improvement that you have planned and are following? If you do, congratulations; you are one of the few. If you don't, you are, unfortunately, one of many in sales. Do something positive about it soon, or resign yourself to life in the middle of the pack.

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