The Five Habits of Highly Effective Salespeople - Habit #4

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Posted: September 5, 2013
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Sales Habit #4:  Lifelong Learning

Here is the fourth habit practiced by successful salespeople.  There is an often used quote in the leadership world, “Leaders are learners.”  Top salespeople regard themselves as leaders and as a result, practice similar habits, a key one being a lifelong learner.  

There are a lot of words thrown around in the sales profession.  “Be a trusted advisor. Be a thought leader and add relevance to every meeting with clients.” 

All of the above is great rhetoric, however, it can only be accomplished if you have established a habit of learning and getting smarter.  Take this short quiz:

  • Do you set aside time each week/month specifically for learning and improving?
  • Do you read or listen to a business book at least once a month?
  • Do you belong to an association that makes you smarter and as a result a better consultant to your prospects and clients?
  • Do you attend at least one educational workshop that helps you hone your skills?
  • Do you hang around people smarter than you?
  • Do you hang around people that don’t always agree with you and challenge your thinking?
  • Are you smarter than you were a year ago? 

Everyone knows the internet has changed the game of sales and business.  Your prospects are more educated….are you?  If you aren’t a student of sales and your product, there is a good chance prospects aren’t finding interactions with you very meaningful. Sure, they might meet with you because you are a nice person. But, don’t mistake hospitality for true interest in your services, and more importantly, a reason to write you a check.

A recent article in the Wall Street Journal talked about the success of billionaire Warren Buffet.  The columnist commented that while others are tweeting, day trading and texting, Warren Buffet and his second in command are spending their time reading, thinking and getting smarter.  Hmmm…. That approach seems to be working in his favor.   

Instill the habit of learning into your daily schedule.  My habit of learning is waking up early to read before I start the day.  I wrap up the day the same way. It’s amazing how much valuable information you can learn in 15 – 30 minutes a day.   

Good selling!

Colleen Stanley