Emotional Intelligence for Sales Success
Connect with Customers and Get Results
Author: Colleen Stanley
Pub Date: November 2012
Print Edition: $17.95
Print ISBN: 9780814430293
Page Count: 224
Format: Paper or Softback
e-Book ISBN: 9780814430309
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There is a Buddhist proverb that states, ?When the student is
ready, the teacher appears.? And luckily for me, the team from
Complete Intelligence, LLC, Marty Lassen and Scott Halford,
showed up as my teachers and helped me discover the answer to
this nagging question. Lassen and Halford are experts in emotional
intelligence and work with executives and managers, showing them
how to incorporate emotional intelligence skills into their personal
and professional roles.
Emotional intelligence skills are rarely taught to salespeople.
Most training is focused on hard sales skills such as finding new
opportunities, negotiation, or closing tactics. There is little attention
placed on soft skills such as empathy, rapport, and self-confidence.
Even less on teaching salespeople how to manage their emotions
and the emotions of others in order to achieve the sales results they
Some salespeople are good at posing questions to prospects. But
if they lack the emotional intelligence skill of empathy, they don?t
communicate the all-important message, ?I really feel your pain and
I do care.? Despite the good questions they ask, prospects don?t
connect with them. They feel as if they are being interrogated
rather than meeting with a trusted advisor where a true partnership
is being forged.
Other salespeople are good at building rapport but have difficulty
building their sales pipelines. They don?t prospect consistently
because they have not developed the emotional intelligence skill of
delayed gratification. Rather than take the time to strategize and
develop a pursuit plan, they give in to the pull of instant gratification
and focus on what is easy instead of what is effective. Proactive
business development is put off with the excuse, ?I?ll do the sales
activity when I have time.? Their wonderful rapport skills are
wasted because they have few, if any, appointments on the calendar.
Still others excel at prospecting, but once they are sitting in a
meeting, facing a sophisticated C-level buyer, they lack the emotional
intelligence skill of self-confidence to close the business at full
margin. Under pressure, they quickly cave into negotiation tactics.
Emotions take control of the sales meeting rather than tapping into
their selling skills, logic, and intellect.
All of these scenarios demonstrate how mastering a variety of
emotional intelligence skills can make a huge impact on a person?s
sales results. After many meetings with Lassen and Halford, coupled
with my years of sales and sales management experience, I
became convinced that lack of emotional intelligence skills training
is a key reason that sales professionals often don?t close the gap
between knowing and doing. Most sales professionals know what
to do. So why aren?t they doing it?
Like many of you, I?ve enjoyed a great deal of success in sales.
However, I have also fallen short when it comes to mastering my
own emotional intelligence skills. Sometimes my high independence
prevented me from asking other people for their help, input, or perspective.
I missed out on the wisdom of others that could have provided
shortcuts to my goal or prevented mistakes. At other times,
my lack of impulse control caused me to make decisions too
quickly and say ?yes? to things I shouldn?t have. Digging out of
those ?impulse decision holes? has created stress and heartburn for
me over the years. I didn?t understand the power of the emotional
intelligence skill of self-awareness, so I never set aside downtime to
accurately assess why the same sales or leadership problems kept
appearing in my life.
Perhaps you have experienced the same issues. After reading
this book and putting its principles into action, you will quickly
discover that soft skills do produce hard sales results.
My Career in Sales
My first exposure to sales was through Jazzercise, a dance fitness
company based out of Carlsbad, California. I owned three franchises
and quickly learned how to sell and market in order to fill the gymnasium
with paying students. I did everything imaginable to bring in
business, from hiring my neighbor?s kids to stuff flyers in mailboxes
to creating a speakers bureau. (Never mind that it was a bureau comprised
of one speaker?me!) I delivered talks on fitness and nutrition
to anyone who would listen, with the goal of converting audience
members into paying clients.
My efforts paid off and my success in building the business
landed me a place on the national training team for Jazzercise. I went
around the country teaching new instructors how to start and grow
their businesses. This was my first exposure to teaching and is where
I learned that I had a love and talent for it.
From there, I had the good fortune to join Varsity Spirit Corporation,
a small firm based in Memphis, Tennessee, that both
manufactures cheerleading uniforms and conducts hundreds of
cheerleading and dance camps and events across the country. The
timing was right, as Varsity was just starting to build a direct sales
force. This company gave many people incredible opportunities for
growth, and fortunately for me, I was one of the recipients.
I started in the field as a sales rep and moved up the corporate
ladder to become Vice President of Sales, directing a national team
of 130. During my ten years at Varsity, we grew from $8M to
$90M, went public, and were named by Forbes magazine as one of
the 200 fastest growing companies in the United States. Varsity is
still growing and very successful, now the largest company in the
After this great opportunity, I pursued teaching and training
sales and sales management professionals full time, and have been
doing that for the last fourteen years. We get hired to ?grow? three
things: sales, profits, and happiness. Although my firm works with
a variety of clients and industries, our customers all have three values
1. They value education and outside advice.
2. They value and invest in their greatest asset, their
3. They treat their vendors like partners.
I am very fortunate to work with great customers.
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