By Terri Ross, Terri Ross Consulting
When you hear the word “sales,” what immediately pops into your head? If you are like most people, words such as “pushy,” “slimy,” “smarmy,” “slick” and “aggressive” come to mind.
When I hear those comments from my clients, I’m always curious about what story they are telling themselves about the sales process.
I hear it all the time:
- “I suck at selling.”
- “I hate sales.”
- “I dont want to feel pushy.”
- “I’m terrible at sales. I’m a medical provider, not a salesperson.”
Sound familiar? If so, you are definitely not alone.
In fact, most clients I encounter have pretty strong limiting beliefs around sales. A limiting belief is an idea or concept that you accept about life, yourself, your world or the people in it that limits you in some way. A limiting belief is merely a thought we believe to be true.
As a high-performance sales coach, the first thing I do when working with clients who have limiting beliefs around sales is ask them a series of questions:
- How true is that belief, really?
- Where did you get that idea from?
- What evidence do you have to support that belief?
- How is it working for you? Has it affected your revenue or confidence?
- What’s another way to look at it?
- How willing are you to let that belief go and learn to master the art of sales?
- How can you take an action step immediately?
Which Sales Mindset Best Describes You?
There are five general mindsets when it comes to sales. Every day and in every sales conversation or consultation, you have the power to choose which mindset you want to approach the sales process from.
The “I lose” mindset: The “I lose” mindset occurs when you feel you are at the mercy of certain events, limiting beliefs, emotions and perceptions that can hold you back from success.
Thoughts such as, “My sales pitch wasn’t good enough,” “I’m terrible at selling and converting, so what’s the point?” or, “Nobody ever buys from me, no matter what I do,” are common at this level. It is easy to avoid taking responsibility when you are in this mindset, as you are subscribing to an “it is what it is” way of thinking where your options seem limited. This mindset is directly correlated to the consultation process.
The “I win, you lose” mindset: This is the mindset of a lot of salespeople. They view the sale as a win, a conquest or a prize. It’s a “my way or the highway” type of black-and-white thinking. Some of the thoughts at this level are, “I can sell anything to anyone at any time,” “I’ll get them to buy no matter what,” “I need to convert this sale,” and, “It’s a dog-eat-dog world.” This is a person who will sell anything, even if it's not the right procedure or treatment, rather than turn someone away.
The “I’ll get them next time” mindset: This mindset involves rationalization, toleration and even a bit of manipulation. It involves thoughts such as, “It’s okay if they don’t book a service or procedure—I’ll get the next one,” “Maybe they didn’t have the money,” or, “I’ll try harder next time.” Also common with this mindset are thoughts such as, “It’s okay—I’m not a trained salesperson, I’m a doctor or a nurse, etc.” Sometimes, some manipulation and a bit of “graspy” energy comes into play, such as “What can I throw in to sweeten the deal?” Your only obligation as a provider is to educate, and when it comes from a place of value, you won’t question yourself.
The “giver/you win” mindset: This sales mindset differs a bit, as the practitioner is focused on the patient winning first and foremost, and it involves thoughts such as, “What can I give or throw in to make them happier or make their life better?” There is no manipulation with this mindset—more of a sense of, “How can I help the patient or make them happy?” Often with this mindset, practitioners give away too much time, throw in extra products or add on services that they would normally charge for.
The “win/win” mindset: With this sales mindset, there is a win/win mentality. You win, as you are able to convert a patient consultation into a paying service or create a long-term treatment plan to generate more revenue; your patient wins, as they are able to get the results they want and improve whatever issue or condition they come to see you about.
If you shift your mindset from selling to educating, you are simply providing additional opportunities to educate your prospective or current patients about what you offer and why they need it, and further cultivate the relationship and the “know, like and trust” factor. If you can approach your consultation from a place of detachment to the outcome of the result, you can focus on simply educating your patients on the benefits, results and solutions you offer, and stand firm on the costs involved.
So, which sales mindset do you find yourself most often identifying with? Remember, you get to choose how you would like to respond vs. react to the sales process.
My team at Terri Ross Consulting is here to help you master the art of sales, whether it is via a live sales training seminar, an onsite practice assessment, a high-performance sales coaching, or learning through my online sales training. Let us help you make sales your zone of genius as well, so patients can't wait to return.
Terri Ross brings more than 20 years of sales and management experience to the field, having worked with leading-edge medical device companies such as Zeltiq, Medicis, EMD Serono, Merck Schering Plough and Indigo Medical, a surgical division of Johnson.
Ross’ vast knowledge and experience as a sales director managing upwards of $20M in revenue and successful teams has allowed her to become a renowned plastic surgery management consultant helping aesthetic practices thrive.
To optimize revenues and business performance, Ross’ practice management consulting services help physicians evaluate practice processes including, but not limited to, overall-operating efficiencies, staff skill assessment, customer service and operating efficiency strategies. The goal is to develop a comprehensive plan of action to improve productivity, quality, efficiency and return on investment.