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I Love Selling!

by David Brock on June 30th, 2022

For those who know my background, many may be surprised. But I love selling–and I love working with highly professional sales people. I can think of few things more exciting, challenging, and rewarding than selling.

Yeah, there’s the challenge of meeting quota, there’s the reward of blowing away your comp plan. But that’s not really why I love selling. Afterall, there are probably easier ways of making as much or more money. And quota has never been my target. It’s something I pass on the way to achieving my goals.

I love selling because of the challenge.

Finding customers that may have the problem we are the best in the world at solving.

Finding a way to engage them in an initial conversation. Figuring out how I can stand out from all the crap that fills their engagement channels Getting them to respond, “let’s talk.” What a rush!

Most of the time, I catch people before they even recognize they have a problem or an opportunity to change. (By contrast, I never respond to an RFP that I didn’t write. That’s tedious, boring, and low return. I can’t make a difference there.). These are the most fascinating conversations. Sharing a story or insights. Sharing some observations about their business. Getting them to think about doing something new or different. Getting them to think about new possibilities. The questions, “I’d never thought of things in that way before…” or “I didn’t realize that, can you tell me more…” These questions energize me.

The conversations where they imagine change, doing something differently. Exploring what it might mean to them (organizationally and individually). Thinking, with them, about the challenges and risks they might face in embarking on this change exploration. Getting really deep into what they care most about. Seeing they trust me enough to open up about their concerns–not about the product I’m selling, or even the alternatives they are considering–though they share these with me. Their concerns are really about, whether they are doing the right thing. They worry about “messing up.” I always learn so much in these conversations.

And these conversations lead to the “helping them figure things out.” This is the intersection of problem solving and confidence building. Working with them, finding a path for success, gaining confidence this is what they NEED to do! It’s not easy, sometimes we go in circles, we shift and turn, but eventually, together, we figure it out and move forward. It’s such a huge sense of accomplishment–that we achieved that together.

And then, moving from deciding what to do to making it happen. Helping them realize the vision we developed together. Dealing with the hiccups, the mistakes, course corrections, but achieving the goal. The tough work is more on the part of the customer, but I have a vested interest in their success, and it is so rewarding to see them succeed. It’s not dissimilar to what we experience, as managers, what we achieve is less rewarding than seeing what our people achieve (and we achieve nothing if they don’t achieve).

Through all this process, there’s another element that is so exciting. Very little of what we do is by ourselves. We get lots of support, from our peers, our company, our partners, our customers. Figuring out what/who I need to achieve more, getting them excited and choosing to work with me on this opportunity, rather than choosing something else, bringing the best resources to bear in helping the customer achieve.

And then there are the setbacks. Not getting responses to the prospecting outreaches. Not being able to engage customers in new discussions about their business. Or, going through this and seeing them make a decision for another alternative. This gets my competitive juices going. What might I have done differently? What did I miss? How could I do better? In some sense it’s like golf. While you are competing with others, you win and lose by how you perform on the course, performing better than anyone else.

While the sense of accomplishment and it’s accompanying rewards are great. I’m always challenges, “How do I get better? How do I do more? Can I set a higher target? Can I have a greater impact?”

Yeah, sometimes there are real downers. Sometimes, there are people that take advantage of you. Sometimes, we just fail. But those are the minority, and adrenalin rush of everything else is far more exciting.

And we get to do this every day!!!

Can you imagine anything more exciting or challenging!!! The opportunity to work with customers solving very difficult problems. The challenge of figuring out how to overcome the obstacles in helping your customer decide and move forward. The creativity in helping our customers think differently, while we learn to think differently at the same time.

I’m not a “gamer,” but I imagine being a professional seller is like playing some of the most challenging video games–but doing this in the real world! Such a rush! Give me more!

All this and we get paid very well for having so much fun! Is there anything better?

I LOVE Selling!

One Comment
  1. Joel Lyles permalink

    Hi Dave!

    Love this post. And this is precisely why I made the (frankly, ill-advised) career path from sales to engineering back to sales.

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