10 Lessons that will HAVE you slayING the sales game OF LIFE




By Gaelan Simpson

Managing Editor


Got my buttocks down to a General Assembly class the other night: The Psychology of Sales. A course not just relevant for those of us who work in Marketing, but for everyone who wants to make a mark and get what they want out of life. Everyone is a salesperson (business people, pilates instructors, and Daters alike) and every interaction you have is a sale. The focus of the class? "You can learn how to sell anything."


You want to learn how to excel at life? Learn how to sell. Yourself. Your brand. Your products. Your ideas. How? Learn how to drill down on the needs of people you’re engaging with and believe in the value of what you’re bringing to the party. 


I gleaned 10 valuable short-hand lessons to tweak my game: 
The first few should be obvious, but bare with me people.


1. You have to have passion about what you’re doing. If you’re not passionate about it, break up with it, quit, anything - just stop it right now.


2. Figure out what motivates you. Are you motivated by rewards, or the anticipation of not doing enough and coming in short?


3. Read books and do training on what you're selling. You wanna be well-versed and in the know, always. This is essential, don’t skip out on it. 


4. Consider how you like to be sold to. Word of mouth? Experts selling to you? Think about those times you’ve bought something you didn’t plan on purchasing. Revisit these experiences and hone in on that why


5. Best way to connect with people you want to win over? Face to face. Do NOT be afraid to pick up the phone and call. Add people on LinkedIn. Write them cards - by hand. Be as personal as possible. However - we still all have to email…. 


6. When you’re emailing: Remove all weak language and niceties. Quit unnecessarily apologizing and overly thanking for their time. Your time is (or should be) worth something, too. Be confident. Wrapping up your emails with “let me know if you have any questions” needs to leave your sign off NOW — if they have questions, your email wasn’t thorough enough and you’re actually prolonging moving forward with what you are pitching. They’ll wonder why they would need to come up with questions - what was left out? You’re wasting time. 


7. There is not one universal person you need to learn to sell to, rather, there are four different types of people you need to understand.  Every person you meet has individual needs. Learn to distinguish between them. See this DISC analysis to understand what these people are all about and how to make them tick. 


8. The four personality types should be running through your head whenever you meet a new contact or potential client (or partner - hello!). Pitch and frame things accordingly. 


9. It takes four steps to close a deal.

  • Activity Phase: How you’re reaching out. Email vs phone call vs introduction. Are you starting out on the right foot? Here's the initial "Hello, I'm Joe."

  • Qualifications Phase: Why you're qualified. Is this right right fit? Does this “sale” even make sense?

  • Objections Phase: Any detours that you run into after establishing yourself - what is the client unsure about?
    *Solving step 3 entails actually listening carefully. Try that.

  • The Close: Contract or cash - self explanatory.

What do you do with these steps, you ask? Lay them out and work backward. Case by case.


One step not mentioned was FOLLOW UP.

10. Many sales calls go really well. We leave beaming and never get back with any answers. (see step 3 re: Listening) Oh, also, those hand written cards are great here. Sounds dated, but it works.


You’re here for a reason. Do you research, up your confidence, prove you're worth something. And deliver. Welcome to a whole new world, your audience awaits you.