And the Award for Salesperson of the Year goes to...

Sales. It's a word that scares off many, whether you're making the offer or receiving it. Remember the last tele-marketer you avoided? Or that knock on the door, because you knew someone was "selling something"? What about not taking up the offer of a sales position, because you think you can't sell? Truth is, we ALL can sell. In fact, we sell from the time we catch the bus, go to an interview or even get our kids to eat their vegetables. Selling is simply the art of persuasion, with a hint of ambition. Once you're convinced that your product is mutually beneficial, that's half the job already done! Think of it: you want Ben to eat his greens. You know Ben will benefit from the nutrition, but as a parent, you also get peace of mind, knowing that your child is eating well. Win-win. Likewise, we won't be great salespeople if we sell for the simple sake of selling to get monetary returns. The product must be of some benefit to the client. Yes, we may want to sell fifty insurance policies per month, but why are we doing so? Is it to simply pay our bills, or is it because our company offers a proposition that is indeed beneficial to the beneficiary? I clearly remember the example of the heart-broken senior who received only a fraction of what was sold to him as a "million-dollar policy." The agent - who happily received his commissions on a monthly basis - never took the time to explain the actual workings of the product. Perhaps because he didn't care, or perhaps he knew that if he explained too much, the client may not have made the purchase. Whatever it was, he would not have been my pick for the Salesperson of the Year Award, even if he did manage to surpass his targets. This is because, sales - much like a romantic relationship - is a two-way street. No one is asking for altruism, it is simply a matter of give-and-take in the most optimum manner possible. So, the next time you try to persuade someone to make a purchase, keep Ben in mind!

-Lots of love & good vibes, Veoma Ali

Veoma Ali is an Advertising Executive, with a Ph.D in Communications and a Masters in Business Administration.