You have the ability right now to learn what it takes to earn whatever income you want. That’s a pretty strong statement, but don't discount it until you've read the rest of this article.

Do you know that the majority of today’s leaders in business were in sales at one time or another? The selling skills they learned to make others feel welcome, comfortable, important, and to trust their expert advice has taken them far. It can do the same for you.

Whether you're in sales now or thinking about going into sales what matters most is your attitude about what you're doing to earn your living. What are you willing to do in order to achieve your goals? How many "no's" are you willing to take before getting to the "yes's" that you need? How much are you willing to change what you are today to get what you want tomorrow?

Let me give you a head start on your road to success. I already know what the great ones do. I have taught proven-effective selling skills to over four million students during the last 30 years. Selling is my hobby. It's my passion. Helping others learn better and more professional ways to serve others is what my business is all about.

Begin by internalizing everything you can possibly get your hands on about your product or service. Become a product of your product. Use it yourself. Talk with clients who use it and love it. Believe in it! People will say "yes" to you more on your conviction and enthusiasm for your product than any fact or figure you may quote.

Note: If you are new to selling, don't settle for selling just anything. Find a product you can become passionate about. It'll make all the difference.

Next, start working on your people skills. There are right and wrong ways to approach people. Your #1 goal when you meet someone new is to have them like you, trust you, and want to listen to you. It may seem elementary, but to have someone like you, you must be likeable. That means you smile. You make eye contact. You introduce yourself. Ask their names. Repeat their names so you know you are pronouncing them correctly. Your desire to be accurate and correct makes a powerful, positive impression.

Establish common ground. People buy from people who are like them. If you like the same sports team, that's common ground. If you live in the same area, that's common ground. If you're around the same age with kids in close grades in school, that's common ground.

Your next step is to determine the clients’ needs. I've developed a quick and easy-to-remember method for this. It's called the NEADS qualification sequence. Remember that you're trying to determine their "needs" but spell it NEADS to remember what to say.

The first letter, "N," stands for Now. Ask them, “What do you have now?” Unless they've won the lottery or inherited millions, few people drastically change what they have now other than to make their lives better. So, knowing what they have now will help you understand where they're coming from.

The next letter, "E," stands for Enjoy. “What do you enjoy most about what you have now?” They'll want to keep the good stuff when considering any change. So your product or service will need to at least cover what they enjoy.

The "A" stands for Alter. “What would you alter (or change) about what you have now?” This is where they will tell you what they need. Ask as many questions as you need to get a clear picture of what they're telling you. Repeat your understanding of their needs back to them and get them to agree that "yes, that's what we're looking for" before going any further.

The "D" in NEADS stands for Decision-Maker. You need to know if they're truly the decision-makers. Ask, “John and Mary, if we’re fortunate to find the right home/investment/insurance program for you today, who other than yourselves would be involved in making a final decision?” If there’s someone else involved in the final decision, you'll need to find out who and present your product to all of them. Never make a product or business presentation to a non-decision-maker unless you just need the practice. If they've told you what they need and that they're the decision-makers, then and only then will you move into presenting the benefits of your product or service.

The “S” in NEADS is for “solution.” You must impart to your clients that you and your company are in the ‘solution’ business—the business of helping others resolve whatever challenge brought you together.

Since no one wants to feel they're 'being sold' expect most potential clients to object about something. It's a natural reflex. Know that if a potential client objects that they're feeling moved toward making a buying decision. You see, people aren't going to waste their time objecting to something they're not interested in. Makes sense, doesn't it?

The great ones in sales prepare answers to the most common objections for their product or service. The answers are psychologically sound and help the buyers rationalize the decision—only if it's truly good for them.

Now don’t forget the final step: Ask for the sale! Don’t laugh this one off thinking you’d never forget that. A study was done years ago where people were asked why they didn't make a purchase after a product had been demonstrated to them. The most common answer was, "We were never asked!" Top professionals in sales know anywhere from five to 25 ways of asking for the final "yes." Those are called closes and if you're in sales to be successful, you'll want to start mastering as many as possible as soon as you can.

You have what it takes to learn to become the best in your field. Just make the commitment and get on with it!

Author's Bio: 

Tom Hopkins is world-renowned as The Builder of Sales Champions, an authority and expert on selling strategies and the Sales Training Expert for, the most complete guide to information about self-improvement online. Let him help you improve your skills and make more sales! For more information contact us at Receive free sales content, tips and closes by subscribing to Tom’s selling skills e-newsletter at

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