You’re standing at a car dealership, eyeing the car you want – or maybe you’re just looking – and a salesperson sidles up next to you: “Heeeeyyyyyy! Nice day we’re having, aren’t we?” You’re thinking “We? There’s no ‘we’ right now.” The salesperson continues: “You look like just the right kind of person for this brand new, cherry red, two-seater – am I right??”  

Uh, no. You’re not right.  

That couldn’t be the farthest car from what you actually need or want.  

Sales. Ick! Right?! I know. I’ve been there. I used to think the same thing. Until I realized something important: Everything I wanted in life was about a ‘sale.’ 

What if salespeople actually listened to you and valued your thoughts and opinions? Well now that changes things, doesn’t it?  

Those people are out there. I promise. You already know them. It’s YOU! It’s anyone you talk to that you work with collaboratively to come to a mutual benefit. I call that ‘life sales.’ We all need something from someone else at some point. Why not help each other?  

When we look at sales like that it’s not so ‘ick’, is it?  

Any time you’re asking anyone for anything, you’re making a life sale. And everybody wins. 

I travel all over the country talking about sales. I stress this every time: Today’s most successful sales professionals use a much more “consultative” approach; that is, they work with the other person – getting to know each other – so both parties get what they want.  

See, sales skills are really life skills. You can barely go through a day of your life without having to convince someone of something. Want a raise at work? You need to sell your boss on it. Hoping to get a date with a classmate? Sell your love interest on it. Trying to get a better table at a restaurant? Sell, sell, sell! 

One of life’s most important tools is the skill that allows you to negotiate with others so you both get what you need and want. You do it every day! I hate to break it to you, but you’re already in the sales business! So now, let’s take it to the next level. It’s time to get what you want EVERY TIME! 

First, create a new-style pitch. Not the usual pitch, but one that is personal and targeted. Next, sit back and listen. Make the conversation about the other person. Finally, ASK! Figure out what the other person is going to get out of helping you and pitch a win-win scenario. 

Remember: The best approach to convincing someone to do you a favor, make an exception for you or give you something you want is to make it worth that person’s while. Keep the vision of a win-win!