BOOK DETAILS

The Authentic Sale: A Goddess's Guide to Business

The Authentic Sale: A Goddess's Guide to Business

by Rena Cohen-First

ISBN: 9780692445808

Publisher The Sales Goddess

Published in Business & Investing/Women & Business, Business & Investing/Marketing & Sales, Nonfiction, Business & Investing

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Book Description

This book is aimed at helping women who feel apprehensive about moving into a sales role, or businesswomen who would like techniques and tools to improve their sales confidence. It is a sales methodology written for women as a response to the vast majority that were written by male authors, and historically, for male salespeople. The Authentic Sale is about empowering women through coaching and traditional sales techniques and by building upon their authentic behavioral styles. The author's goal is to show every woman that she can become a Sales Goddess in all circumstances.

Sample Chapter

Introduction

As a professional salesperson, sales director, and sales coach, I have created this book to help women coach themselves into a fabulous sales or business career. This is about understanding where you want to be and how to get there by building upon your authentic behavioral style, utilizing spiritual empowerment tools, and learning about traditional sales methodologies.

We have all heard of women expressing fear regarding moving into a sales role: “Oh, I could never be in sales.” Many of us are, or have been, in administrative and service roles where we’ve won and supported the sale only to watch someone else take the credit. Others of us have gone through divorces, single parenthood, and the economic hell that has catapulted us out of our fear and into a place of career action. We all sell in one way or another. We sell to our friends, peers, and customers—directly and indirectly—in any business setting.

There is a misconception that only a certain type of woman can be successful in sales. My goal is to show every woman that she can move from the supportive roles, considered more traditionally feminine, to the front lines in the sales force. What’s more, that she can flourish there. I should know—I did it.

I was an awkward and bullied child with a nervous tic that led everyone in sixth grade to call me “Blinky.” I was a troubled and rebellious teenager who barely graduated from high school. But after pursuing my first sales opportunity, I completed my degrees and eventually became a top seller for some of the largest nutritional ingredient manufacturers in the world. I have built emotional connections with several of the most influential brands, resulting in millions of dollars’ worth of business for my employers. I have broken new ground for important and meaningful ingredients that have truly impacted consumer health and wellness.

Sales is a top-earning profession for women and men, and it will continue to be so for the next few decades. For women especially, there is a vacuum out there for your success. The old boys’ club is retiring. We are in a new day that is all about knowing how to add strategic value and help companies drive the process. And there is indeed a process—which you can make your own and know like the back of your hand.

Professional Coaching

Executive coaching is one of the most effective ways to ensure success. It increases productivity, attainment of goals, and satisfaction in all aspects of career advancement. Many organizations pay thousands of dollars to have their top management coached, and they enjoy a return on investment that is several hundred percent. Women who are just entering a sales career might not have the budget to make such an investment. This book is an affordable gateway to sales coaching, allowing women access to a dialogue that helps actualize their dreams.

Spiritual Integration

Spiritual laws, such as the law of attraction, have been popularized by talk show hosts and social media, but they have existed for centuries. The theory of universal archetypes made popular by Carl Jung states that all personalities represent an aspect of universal consciousness that hold within each an inherent potential. Many goddesses who personify this greatness are evident in the business world. You can easily see Athena the Wise taking charge in meetings, or Demeter the Primordial Mother uncovering and protecting the needs of her customer. Tapping into your goddess or goddesses is a powerful way to gain access to the potential that lies within us. An important portion of this book will be utilizing these non-denominational spiritual tools to best tap into the forces that enable confidence, success, and achieving your goddess–higher self. These tools have been powerful forces for my success during the most tumultuous times in my life. Female goddess energy wants her women to succeed; as she carries the weight of the world on her shoulders, it is only fair that she gets equal access to opportunity.

Chapter 7: The Speaker

Communication, Presentation, Persuasion

Your intention in this segment is to present and persuade.

Customize Your Solution

Now that you have captured the true needs of the customer, go back to your product and service expertise and start thinking about how your services fulfill the customer’s needs. This would be an excellent time to involve your colleagues and resources. I have been with organizations that formalize this process of information-gathering and name it with some exclusionary jargon. Years later, I spewed out that same jargon at a less formal organization. I vaguely recall the eye-rolls that one earned me.

Regardless of what you call it, getting your resources’ and colleagues’ insight always pays off. Set up an agenda with exactly which information you are seeking, a summary of the customer and of the opportunity, and your intentions for your presentation. Sometimes asking sales reps with more experience in the specifics of the opportunity or industry segment can be informative. When you ask, remember not to jump in and one-up the information. Nothing is more counterproductive then blocking good insight with defensiveness. This is good practice.

If you do not have a set of colleagues and resources to have this mastermind discussion with, then hit that fabulous Internet and see if you can find any solution ideas to help further refine your upcoming pitch.

Expanding Your Reach with the Customer

You will by now have learned, through your authentic needs investigation, who is involved in making decisions along with your primary contacts. Keep them in mind as you create your plan for this next phase of the process, which will be to deliver those solutions. An excellent pivot to this important phase is to ask who else within the organization would find value in learning about your (solution) presentation. One of the gentlest ways to engage the other influences with the customer is to ask your contact if they would prefer that you invite their colleagues, or if they would like to handle it.

The buyers are often asked and sometimes expected to bring their colleagues into a sales discussion. This takes some work for them, as you will be a reflection of their decision to ask their boss and colleagues to potentially waste time on hearing what you have to say. By being an expert in your product, demonstrating credibility, and now offering to share a customized presentation, you will begin to reassure them. At the same time, you are also expected to drive the sale forward; you must to take control and ask for the next step. This is not easy to do. Call this taking your medicine. So by all means, soften the pill by gently, humbly, and respectfully asking for these next steps. I might follow up from needs assessment with a request for a presentation in the following way:

Dear John,

Thank you for taking the time to visit with me last week. I greatly enjoyed the discussion around your plans for the upcoming year and especially appreciated your warm welcome.

We feel that Widget Central and The Sales Goddess truly share a passion for sales empowerment for the all-female Widget sales staff and would indeed make excellent partners!

Per our discussion about presenting and ideating around several opportunities for collaboration that would add the most value to Widget Corp, might Tuesday, March 16 work for a follow-up presentation?

Also, per your kind mention of your colleagues in Research and Development and Strategy finding value in this discussion, we are thrilled to include them in the meeting. Please let me know if I can go ahead and send out the invitations to each.

Thank you again for the opportunity to support Widget Corp. The entire team here at The Sales Goddess remains at your service.

Best regards,

Rena Cohen-First

That was obviously laying it on thick, but you get the idea: humility, openness, and a spirit of invitation.

Presenting

Regardless of whether you intend to open up your PowerPoint presentation and present to a room full of people or if you now verbally move through some ideas for project opportunities, you are still entering a formal phase in your process. It is important that you identify which outcome you would like to walk away with prior to beginning, so that you can put that intention out there in your introduction.

You always want to start any formal presentation by letting the people in the room know why they should listen to you. I have sat through many presentations without being told the big picture and what it means to me. Starting a presentation with this insight lets people know, “Hey, you should listen to this because I can help you understand why your competition is kicking your butt!” or, “Listen to what I am going to say because you can use this information in your meeting next week.” There are various professional formulas to open and close meetings, but in all of them it is always important to tell people why this information will matter to them. Also make sure to put your intention, objectives, and purpose forth in the opening and then reiterate them in the closing. This is the frame that you put around your presentations. Below are some formulas for beginning this segment of your sales call.

Formal Presentation

Open with a general benefit statement similar to the one previously discussed:

1.Gratitude—thank them for the opportunity to share with them.

2. Introduce yourself (scripted).

3. Give the room the background of what led up to the presentation, to get everyone on the same page. If everyone in the room is already in the loop, still summarize this in one sentence.

4. What is great about them?

5. What is great about your company?

6.How do you align with each other?

7. Share what you are going to discuss (and how it will benefit them) in three main points.

As a formal presentation, this opening statement should be followed by a summary of the agenda in three sentences. If your agenda is long, try categorizing the points into three categories.

Here is an example:

1. Thank you for your time, and especially for the warm welcome.

2. My name is Rena Cohen-First and I’ve been with Widget Company for the past 6 years, and in the ingredient industry for the past 17 years.

3. John from procurement was kind enough to invite us to share our latest technology with your group.

4. Widget Company is the leading and most innovative widget marketer in the world.

5. We have become the market-leading widget parts manufacturer due to alliances with leaders such as you.

6. We share a commitment to bettering the experience of the widget consumer.

7. Today I am excited to share with you some of our pipeline technologies that align with your target market, up-and-coming trends that we are seeing, and impacts that we are making in the industry.

If this is not a formal presentation, however, you should still begin in this way:

1. Thank them.

2.Introduce yourself.

3.What is great about them?

4.What is great about you?

5. What are we now excited to share with them? A bit more casual then the last version, this still sets the tone and professionally pivots into this segment.

For the less formal presentation, the tone will be much more genial. As you prepare, picture yourself sitting at their desk in their office, not standing in a boardroom. However, you still need to hit all of your presentation points. Here’s an example:

Continues...

Excerpted from "The Authentic Sale: A Goddess's Guide to Business" by Rena Cohen-First. Copyright © 2015 by Rena Cohen-First. Excerpted by permission. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. Excerpts are provided solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
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Author Profile

Rena Cohen-First

Rena Cohen-First

Rena Cohen-First is a Sales Person, Sales Director, and Sales Coach who has succeeded in the Food Ingredient Industry for the past 17 years, selling to the largest food and beverage manufacturers in the world. She has taught online business and leadership classes as an adjunct instructor, studied Professional and Executive Coaching, completed her MBA and Served in the US Army. She resides in San Diego with her 2 children and husband. See more about Rena at: www.thesalesgoddess.com

View full Profile of Rena Cohen-First

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