Repost from 2011
A skill every leader needs to have is the ability to sell. This is a skill you need to have no matter your current position or industry. This is because every day you are intentionally or unintentionally selling something. It might not be a product or service but as we will see there are many other things every leader sells. The thing we need to remember is every leader sells but not every leader is effective at selling. For example,
If it is during a job interview you are selling yourself to a potential employer.
If you’re trying to get money from a bank it’s selling your idea or vision to the potential lender.
If you’re a church leader you share (sell) Jesus and the gospel in hopes others will see the truth.
If you’re a blogger you write because you have a desire to sell (produce) something other people would want to read.
All of these things requires an aspect of selling. But it depends on how good you are at selling that determines the outcome. We will discuss how to become better at selling soon, but now here are 4 things a leader sells or should sell,
1. Themselves- A leader (or person) should be able to sell themselves. Which requires the ability to sell themselves to their people and potential people who could follow them. This takes the willingness to be yourself, understanding your strengths and weaknesses and be your unique self.
2. Vision- People follow a leader’s vision because they have communicated a compelling vision of the future. It takes a leader selling the vision to create buy-in and commitment.
3. Goals- If a leader wants to see results then they need to sell the importance of accomplishing goals and seeing results. Leader’s need to provide goals which lead to results.
4. Values- The leader’s values should be showing through their actions and behaviors. Before the people buy into your values, the leader first needs to live by them. Over time people will see your values and if they are good they will begin to add them to their life.
These are some of the most important areas a leader needs to be able to sell to others. Here are 10 points to remember about selling (in no specific order),
- Be yourself
- Be passionate and enthusiastic
- Be confident
- Be clear in your communication
- Know what you’re selling
- Focus on building a relationship and connecting
- Find a want, need, or desire and then fill it
- Make sure you listen
- Have clear intentions
- Be a good closer and ask for buy-in
Remember everyone is selling something. So make sure you develop your selling ability, even if it’s only selling yourself.
Question: How do you see sell yourself as a leader?