Learn what being a member does for you
The Seller Styles
Learn the styles and take your free assessment
See a summary of all our programs and certifications
Certified Professional Sales Person(CPSP®)
Develop your potential as a certified sales professional
Certified Professional Sales Leader(CPSL®)
Grow your impact as a certified sales leader
Certified Master Sales Professional (CMSP®)
Join the elite group of sales professionals and leaders
Advanced Sales Influence (ASI)
Take your influence and leadership to the next level.
Sales Success Principles
Learn foundational sales behaviors, strategies, and skills
Power of Contact Marketing
Learn from marketing expert and author Stu Heinecke
Join the top 1% of sales professionals in the world.
Next Level Virtual Coaching
Join our ongoing dynamic virtual coaching community
Explore job postings from some of the best companies in the country looking for sales professionals
Daily Dose of Influence!
Enjoy our video series of influence tips and strategies
Leads To Growth
Dig into our podcast featuring industry leaders and experts
Learn from our high-level sales coaching video series
Women of Sales & Influence – Facebook Live Series
Be inspired by our Facebook Live series spotlighting top women influencers
Women of Sales & Influence – Video Blog
Enjoy valuable, high-level sales strategies to empower your sales goals
The Growth Quotient
You’ve heard about IQ, but what is your GQ?
Our Commitment to You
We are here to help your approach to sales, how you interact with others, and how you perform and execute
NASP Sales Blog
Learn from our member-submitted articles for sales professionals
Write For Us
Share your sales expertise and insights with our community
About Our CEO
Standards of Conduct
Common Questions and Answers
It is an interesting question if you stop and consider the role of the salesperson. Of course, considering the role in an abstract way is one thing, but what about when you consider it from a personal perspective? What happens as a salesperson when you put your emotions aside for a moment, relax, take a deep breath and honestly ask yourself, “What role do I play with my buyers?”
When I ask salespeople what value they bring to their buyers, I usually get a typical answer that is full of a lot of smoke puffery. When I ask this question of buyers, and in particular professional buyers, I get an entirely different answer. For professional buyers who see a wide variety of salespeople, the value they place on them is usually very minimal. Are you wondering why?
There’s one simple reason that can sum it all up:
At the end of the day, you as a salesperson must ask yourself, “Am I merely a conduit of information?” If you are, then you’re wasting your time, your company’s time, and your customer’s time. You might as well just email your buyer the information and then go play golf.
If you can’t as a salesperson honestly lay claim to problems you’ve helped your customers overcome, then you really have to begin questioning the role you play. Yes, I’m being quite harsh, but with the advent of technology and communication, the role of the salesperson has changed. If you as a salesperson have not recognized and embraced this change, then you are nothing more than the walking dead.
Buyers don’t want people who bring them nothing more than information. They want solutions. Unfortunately, because buyers often have far too much to do, they don’t even know what their problems are or what challenges their company is facing. This is the role the salesperson needs to play — the role of helping identify the problems, whether blatant or obscure, and turning them into opportunities you can solve for the customer.
So how do you go about identifying problems? You as the salesperson must become an investigator — someone who is determined to find out what really is happening in an organization, industry and global marketplace. Then, you need to show your customer how what you found is impacting them now or will be impacting them in the future.
Instead, you need to develop questions to which you don’t have answers. More than likely, these will be questions to which your buyer doesn’t have answers either. By asking these questions, you’re helping move the buyer to viewing you differently. Your role is to be seen as the one salesperson who is genuinely committed to helping them move themselves and their company to a higher level. This may be by growing their sales or helping them reduce their costs.
When you can clearly identify ways you’ve helped your buyer achieve either of these outcomes, then you will know you’re no longer the type of salesperson that buyers love to hate. Plus, you’ll be growing your bottom line at the same time. And that’s a lot better than simply doling out information!
About the author
Mark Hunter, The Sales Hunter, is a consultative selling expert committed to helping individuals and companies identify better prospects, close more sales, and profitably build more long-term customer relationships. He is also author of “High-Profit Selling: Win the Sale Without Compromising on Price.”