First, what is an introvert and can an introvert become a good salesperson? Well, instead of giving a technical description, lets do a simple self-test:
- Do you often prefer to be just alone with your thoughts than to “socialize” with a bunch of people?
- Do you prefer deep meaningful conversations compared to shallow small talk?
- At the end of a tiring day, would you prefer to just go home and quietly recharge or go out clubbing with friends?
If your answer is yes to all 3 questions then there’s a high chance that you might be an introvert. Introverts are generally those who prefer to spend their time comfortably alone or with just very few people around. Please note, introverts are NOT SHY which is the normal misconception. It is really a matter of preference, in general, introverts prefer quiet and solemn compared to loud and gregarious. When socializing, Introverts in general just prefer deeper social connections which they limit to just a few close friends.
So, having said all this, let’s go back to the main question– can an introvert become a good salesperson? The answer is a resounding YES!
HOWEVER WOULD AN INTROVERT WANT TO BECOME A SALES PERSON IN THE FIRST PLACE?
However, the more appropriate question would be “Would an Introvert want to become a sales person in the first place?” Based on personal experience, unless they have no choice, they wouldn’t want to. I would even go as far as saying, they would intentionally avoid it if they could.
WRONG PERCEPTIONS AND SUSTAINABILITY
The main reason is perception.
Before I started working at Businessmaker Academy, I thought that sales required people to be shameless, extroverted, and thick skinned — which are all the things Introverts like me intentionally avoid. I associated sales as “hustling, convincing, forcefully persuading”.
While this perception exists and is still practiced today, this is honestly not sustainable anymore.
In today’s society where information and technology demands transparency, speed and sincerity, a different approach is becoming more and more needed.
A more analytical, strategic, and information based type of selling is what sales is becoming. In other words, the world and how sales is done is changing, and believe it or not, introverts as I have learned, are more naturally equip to adapt and excel in the field of Sales and Marketing now more than ever.
Here are 3 reasons why I believe this to be true:
1. LISTENING SKILLS
Introverts are good at listening to other people. They are inquisitive and curious, so they keep asking questions while focused on the other person. This sincerity in introverts is hard to fake — It is authentic and the other person will quickly realize it. In sales, it is important to listen to clients, but more importantly, the client needs to feel that they are being listened to as well. The focus in a sales conversation must be about understanding the need of the client not just about blindly pushing the product which is contrary to what most people think about selling.
Here’s a sales riddle that sales people and businesses have been trying to solve for the longest time: “People love buying stuff but hate being sold to”. It means, customers and clients likes buying but on their own terms. Therefore, listening and asking the right questions is a must. So, if you are an introvert who loves listening, asking, conversing about deeper issues, with a little perspective and guidance from a fellow introvert salesman, you may want to give “selling” a try.
Aside from being good at listening, Introverts are good at tasks that don’t require a lot of human interaction. Most introverts are “Information Mavens” means they love gathering, curating and sharing information. Especially now with the convenience of the internet and technology, “researching” keeps their minds entertained for a long time.
Research is crucial in sales. One of the critical elements that separates a typical sales person from a really good one is in the amount of preparation they do before they approach and present the product to the customer or client. Researching properly is an essential skill in sales and Introverts are naturals at it.
3. DEEP AND ANALYTICAL THINKING
Introverts in general also excel in tasks that involve a strategic approach and tasks that require deep thought and analysis. They work best in situations where ideas and strategies are much more valued than charisma or charm. This is not to say Introverts cannot be Charming themselves. Making great presentations, enticing emails, scheduling follow-ups, and organizing work flow are just some of the tasks an introvert can do exceptionally well. They are able to understand the importance of the nitty-gritty operational as well as technical side of sales.
Can an Introvert become a good salesperson?
Again, yes. Introverts are service oriented, prepared, and uses technology to their advantage. However, they must still learn other skills that are out of their comfort zone to maximize their potential. Of course, guidance from a fellow Introvert sales and marketing person is incredibly useful if you were to decide to get into it. Believe it or not, there are Introverts who have excelled in this field and are willing to teach what they know.