IQ has long been the predictor of a person’s success in his or her professional life. For those of you reading this blog, there is good news: EQ or emotional intelligence is an equally important predictor of success. The definitions for Emotional Intelligence vary from academic descriptions to the very simple. Emotional intelligence is the ability to manage your emotions so they don’t manage you.
So how does EQ help sales professionals achieve hard sales results? Top salespeople excel at emotion management and possess high self awareness of triggers or events that can send them into non productive behaviors or actions.
For example, a salesperson meets with a prospect who shares his pain. He cites numerous cases where the existing vendor has fallen short of expectations. The frustrated prospect makes statements such as, “We need to make a change. I am tired of missed deadlines.”
The salesperson hears the ‘buying signal,’ or the trigger and emotions start running the sales meeting. She gets excited and starts the first act of showing up and throwing up solutions.
The prospect shuts down because he really just wanted someone to hear his ‘pain’ before giving advice. He also doesn’t like the solution provided by the salesperson because it is the same one the existing vendor recommended to fix the ‘missed deadline’ problem.
The prospect politely ends the meeting with a “This all sounds interesting. Let me think it over. Feel free to give me a call in a couple of weeks.”
The salesperson moves from excitement to bewilderment. What just happened? The prospect was so open in sharing his concerns. He sounded committed to making a change.
This salesperson didn’t apply her emotional intelligence skills. She didn’t use her EQ skills of empathy and try to step into the prospects shoes.
- There was no validation or acknowledgement of the frustration of missed deadlines.
- She didn’t apply her problem solving skills to fully uncover the cause and impact of missed deadlines.
- And most important, she didn’t manage her emotions. Her excitement prevented her from honoring each step of her sales approach. She got sloppy.
What’s your sales EQ? Are you managing your emotions so you can effectively execute hard selling skills? Or are your emotions managing you?
Chief Selling Officer