In selling, I See You Before I Hear You

Good appearance is a key trait you will find in sales champions. Appearance is very critical in selling because you are seen before you are heard. If your appearance turns me off, then I am unlikely to want to listen to you. It has been repeated very often that how you dress is how you are addressed. In other words, if my driver dresses very respectably and takes my costly car to run an errand for me, people would assume that he owns the car and therefore will address him respectfully. On the hand, if I, the owner of the car dresses shabbily and drives a costly car, most people would assume that I borrowed the car or that I am just the driver or mechanic.

Great salespeople pay detailed attention to their appearance including the hair, nails, shoes, belts, bags, perfume, clothes, etc. Good dressing in selling is not so much about how expensive your clothes and accessories are; it is more about the quality, the neatness, the fitting on you and the carriage and poise your present. A good dress sense also has to do with dressing right for the occasion. You don’t want to go to a beach party with your expensive designer, three-piece suit. 

In business development, you dress for where you are going to, not where you are. You dress for who you want to be, not for who you are now. Remember the story of Joseph in the bible? How he shaved and packaged himself to see the king. Didn’t he end up as the prime minister of Egypt? If you want to be a chief executive of a bank, start dressing like one, even though you are just a low-level officer not necessarily in terms of the cost of the stuff you wear. You don’t have to buy the 2,000 dollars suit, but you can get a decent one for 50 dollars. You can even a tailor in Aba to make you a good suit if you can’t afford the already-made designer suit. It’s all about packaging. 

Sales champions have a special set of attire and shoes for certain networking platforms and functions. They know the right things to wear. They know the importance of looking good every day and in everywhere because you never can tell whom you are going to run into. A superior sales person doesn’t take it for granted that because they are in their vicinity, they can afford to walk around the estate in bathroom slippers. Excellence thrives on consistent brand communication. There is constant consideration of people’s perception, part of which is derived from how you dress and how you talk. But the emphasis is, first and foremost, on how you dress, since people see you before they hear you. 

Before you step out of your house, take a good look in the mirror and ask yourself: ‘how much respect will I give to this man in the mirror on account of his appearance?’ You don’t want to attend a function, take a seat beside someone who looks at your shirt, tie, shoes and belt and decides to change their table because you look like a pickpocket or tout. 

Sales excellence thrives on consistent brand communication. There is constant consideration of people’s perception, part of which is derived from how you dress and how you talk. But the emphasis is, first and foremost, on how you dress, since people see you before they hear you. 

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