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3 Key Elements to Being Successful in Sales

Like many entrepreneurs and sales professionals, I have been selling since I was a teenager. Over the years, I have hawked worms, newspapers and pins, chocolate bars and books door to door, knives and lamps on street corners, vitamins and herbs in retail and online, and eventually, advertising, as well as coaching services and training to companies. I think I have been pretty good at it. In fact, I have to say that I love to sell, because if I can get a transaction right, I am matching a product or service with someone who is pleased to make a well timed, suitable purchase.

While not everyone feels comfortable in sales, a career in sales can be very rewarding. Not only can you make a great living in sales and provide for your family, the execution of successful sales, can convey a sense of personal accomplishment and increased self-confidence. So, what are the keys to being successful in sales?

  1. Treat Others the Way You Would Like to be Treated! There is a sense of satisfaction when you develop a relationship with your customers in dealing honestly with them. In this way, we garner respect and people trust us. When there is trust in a sales relationship, closing the sale is just a natural progression of respecting others and treating them just as we wish to be treated. Unfortunately, in the past, sales people have acquired a bad rap because of the odd disrespectful and inconsiderate sales individual.

  2. Know Why you are selling! Without well-informed motivation, sales can be a struggle. My probabilities of success were best achieved when I clearly understood why I was in sales. Perhaps it was a goal I had set for my self for the use of the money. Many times, I had to sell goods or services to cover my expenses and keep a roof over my head and that of my family. Having clarity about what you want is paramount to being successful in sales.

  3. Plan or Fail! Many sales professionals fail because they don’t plan and if they do plan, they don’t follow through on their plans. Making sales and hitting targets relies on having a plan and understanding the key tasks that determine success. Successful sales people should know the exact profit on an average sale and the necessary number of sales needed to hit their targets. This will determine the amount of activity necessary for success. If you think that you need to make 100 calls a week to hit your targets, that means you will have to be doing a minimum of 20 calls per day. Blocking time as well as being prepared and organized are keys to successful sales.

A career in sales can be fun and rewarding but it takes a positive mindset that enjoys challenges and creating solutions. When we understand our reasons for selling, have a plan for success and are ready and willing to treat others the way we would like to be treated, our sales career will take off.

Dave Fuller, MBA is the author of the book Profit Yourself Health and an award winning Certified Professional Business Coach with the firm Pivotleader. Have a sales story to tell? Email


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