Thursday, 22 March 2012

GLOSSARY – Sales-on-purpose

Greatness is never given, it must be taken – PGA Tour Slogan

Variations of this quote are attributable to US President Barack Obama (earned in place of “taken”), William Shakespeare (slightly wordier), and Vincent Mancini in The Godfather III (way angrier.)  I like golf.

As with any relationship, you develop term and phrases that are unique to your sphere of influence.  Todays key-phrase is “sales on purpose.”  It comes up in my conversations with retailers on a regular basis.  I might say, “are they someone who can do sales-on-purpose?”

Hiring sales staff is a difficult task; one that affects all of our businesses profoundly.  After the miners unearth gold and precious gems, the metallurgists, lapidaries and diamond cutters work their magic, the designers shape, the salesmen sell, the retailer displays, it is your sales force who ultimately are charged with the responsibility of getting jewellery the last 18” into the consumers hands.  There are two extremes in retail jewellery: items that are bought and items that are sold (two more key-phrases in my vernacular.)  Items that are bought require order-takers.  Put these items into a vending machine: people will insert their credit card and out will drop the $99 diamond heart pendant, the “I love you” bead or the Ironman watch.

Items that are “sold” require people who do “sales on purpose.”  Rather than just being pleasant and knowing how to ring-up a sale, doing sales on purpose requires knowledge, skill and charisma.  Those who do sales on purpose must know their product, know their industry and know how to maximize every sales opportunity.

You’ve all heard of the “born salesman or saleswoman.”  They’re usually an outgoing assertive personality type, and have a knack for earning trust.  You don’t have to be born with it.  When you choose a vocation and spent 40-odd hours a week doing it, you should continually strive to do it better.  If your vocation is selling jewellery, you need to keep up on industry news, deepen your knowledge of the product and constantly strive to build your selling skills.

Charisma is often considered an X-factor exclusive to a chosen few.  I believe any of us can be charismatic to some people in certain settings.  If you know and love jewellery, and express that to someone who is excited about buying jewellery, you will certainly be seen as “charismatic” in that environment.

Nobody wants to hire sales clerks who will remain worth minimum wage.  Everyone wants their staff to turn into selling machines.  If you’re not a superstar salesperson yet, don’t worry about it.  The most effective jewellers and salespeople are the ones who are continually pushing themselves to learn more and achieve higher sales.  That doesn’t happen by accident; it’s sales-on-purpose.

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