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Hate Sales Work? That’s Okay.

Hate Sales Work? That's Okay!


Sales: The Lifeblood of a Company, the Bane of Seller’s Existence


Let's face it, sales work can be miserable! Despite its vital role in driving success—for both the business and ourselves—many sales professionals might be reluctant to admit their dislike for certain aspects of the job. Maybe it's the concern about appearing negative or the fear of seeming unfit. Whatever the reason, many sales professionals silently endure their discontent. Consider this: there is usefulness in admitting what’s dreadful about sales work. Let’s first consider the work.


Sales Managers:


As a sales manager, your primary responsibility is to achieve the company's sales goals, and the pressure is always on, especially when things go wrong. Challenges can arise at any point—whether it's assessing progress, optimizing productivity, supporting your team, evaluating the effectiveness of strategies, or keeping up with technological advances, market changes, and competition. The constant need to juggle these demands while maintaining a motivated and high-performing team can be particularly grueling.




As a sales representative, you constantly search for qualified leads and work to engage them. You must persevere despite the odds, secure meetings, and nurture opportunities. Effective negotiation is crucial, as is converting potential into quota-squashing sales. The pressure to reach various performance targets is intense, and the challenges are numerous—dealing with rejection, managing time, staying motivated, and maintaining a positive attitude despite setbacks.


Unlike other professions where dissatisfaction can be hidden, those in sales face a unique challenge when they dislike their job-related activities. But before we dive into that, a quick word to those who actually enjoy selling.


If you're someone in sales who genuinely enjoys the work, why read this article? Never mind that question; just be honest: you enjoy sales because one of these is true about your situation: (1) you have a product or service that sells itself, (2) you’re a natural at selling and revel in your good fortune, or (3) you’re an enigma, wrapped in a mystery. Sure, most salespeople have their off days, but if you truly relish every aspect of sales, you might just be an anomaly. For most of us, sales is not a profession to be enjoyed in all its aspects. So, let’s accept the fact that we loathe certain parts of the work and channel that energy to our advantage! Step one is to confront the problem.


The Problem


Disliking sales work isn't the actual problem; it's how we suppress or react to this dislike that we must consider. Suppression and unproductive responses can negatively impact performance, making a bad situation worse. We need to adopt a "constructive dislike" approach that allows our aversions to be viewed in a useful way.


Allowing ourselves to acknowledge our dislikes can be empowering and lead to a deeper understanding of their sources. For example, we might discover that activities like cold calling aren't the actual issue but rather a symptom of something deeper, such as a lack of confidence in our skills or the product itself. By identifying the true source of our dislike, we can focus our efforts on resolving the real problem instead of wasting time begrudging its symptoms.


Remember, many salespeople experience dislike of sales work. That's okay! In fact, given the nature of the work, it's to be expected. The key is acceptance and leveraging this constructive dislike to your advantage. By channeling negative energy into productive actions with greater clarity and focus, you'll be empowered to see challenges clearly, confront hurdles wisely, and manage the undesirable aspects of sales for improved results. Ultimately, this transformation leads to substantial achievements, goal attainment, and the success of your sales goals, making you a highly effective salesperson!


Actionable Steps


Constructive dislike is a powerful framework, but it requires action. Here are some suggestions to get you started:


1. Accept the Situation


Take time to honestly reflect on what aspects of sales you dislike. Be specific. Is it certain tasks like cold calling or handling objections? Is it the pressure to meet quotas or the fear of rejection? Understanding precisely what triggers your dislike is crucial.


Be introspective without judgment. Recognize that everyone has aspects of their job they don’t enjoy. This self-awareness forms the foundation for addressing and improving your relationship with those tasks.


2. Look for the Source (not at the symptom)


Don't just identify the dislike; think deeper to understand the "why" behind it. Is it a lack of confidence in your skills? Are there specific gaps in your knowledge or training? Could it be a mismatch between your personal values and the sales techniques you're expected to use?


Ask yourself probing questions to uncover the underlying reasons. Sometimes what seems like a dislike of sales tasks may actually stem from a broader issue like burnout or a need for skill development. Engage in conversations with trusted colleagues or mentors to gain different perspectives on your challenges.


3. Problem Solve and Test Solutions


Based on the root cause, brainstorm targeted strategies to address your dislike. This could involve skill-building exercises, refining your approach to specific activities, or even negotiating changes in your role or responsibilities that better align with your strengths and interests.


Break down your solutions into actionable steps with clear timelines and metrics for success. For example, if you dislike cold calling due to anxiety, consider practicing with a mentor or exploring alternative methods of prospecting that feel more natural to you. (You should never make sales calls without positive energy and confidence in their success).


4. Leverage Support


Don't be afraid to seek guidance from coaches, colleagues, or sales training programs. Often, discussing your challenges with others in the field can provide valuable insights and encouragement. Professional development opportunities can also equip you with new tools and strategies to enhance your performance.


Join a supportive community within your organization and industry. Attend workshops or seminars focused on sales techniques and mindset. These interactions not only provide practical advice but also reinforce that you're not alone in facing challenges in sales.


By implementing this advice, you can turn your dislike into a springboard for achieving greater sales success. Proactively addressing your dislikes not only enhances satisfaction in your work but also projects professionalism to those you interact with.



There are other techniques for channeling your dislike of sales work into an advantage and ultimately, greater success! Schedule a consultation today to learn more and get a personalized plan to overcome your sales aversions! (Limited consultations available.)



Copyright © 2024 Steven Robert Young.  All rights reserved.



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