There was a time when I could have never dreamed it was possible to feel ease with selling. (Maybe you can relate?!) But in my early years, I had an experience that helped me begin to gain confidence and skill in it, and maybe most importantly: I realized that knowing how to sell gave me options.
Later, as a broke college student my first year at university I realized selling might again be the answer. This time it mattered more than ever as I needed it as a way to survive. Paying my own way for college — I’d quickly gotten in over my head. But even though I did have some skills in selling, I was still nervous to do it in such a big way. It felt intimidating. I reluctantly took that sales job simply as a way to stay afloat.
The ad promised working less hours and making more money. That was music to my ears as up to that point I’d been working around the clock, not earning enough to pay my bills, and had become so run-down that I’d started getting sick regularly.
The work environment there was intense. In a blur of knee-knocking fear and constant tension headaches, the first few weeks on the job had me wanting to quit, repeatedly. Witnessing first-hand the tactics that often give the industry a bad name — it felt awful. I hadn’t seen that side of things before.
But I promised myself from day one that I wouldn’t go that route … even if it meant I didn’t make it. Surprisingly, by just being myself, respecting prospective clients, and not pushing, I ended up out-selling most of the aggressive, pushy, bro-sales types. My name became a near-permanent fixture on the leader board (which was really just a cheap dry-erase board … but my name was on it, a lot!)