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What's In Your
Sales Toolkit

by Craig Harrison

December, 2005
Transaction World Magazine

Not all tools reside in a tool chest. Many of the tools for your success are in your work environment: at your desk, in your drawers, on your wall, on your head and elsewhere. Tell me, what tools do you need to make the sale?

Buttress your sales approach with the proper tools to propel you to success. When you have and apply the right tools you'll find everything is easier: cold calls, sales calls, interviews, following up and more.

At Your Desk:

Your desk and work area are central to your sales efforts. Take pride in creating an environment conducive to success.

  • Is your chair comfortable? Does it give you proper support?
  • Is your desk and work area well lighted?
  • Is there ample ventilation?
  • Are there plants nearby to provide oxygen and an organic feel?
  • Is there a window nearby? Bonus points for a nice view.
  • Do you display nice posters, pictures or artwork?

Each of these elements contributes to a feeling of well-being and comfort. Together they cultivate creativity, provide peace of mind and increase your productivity.

On and In Your Desk:

Without cluttering your desk and drawers you should nevertheless have these items within arm’s reach:

  • Desktop of laptop computer
  • Telephone and Headset
  • Dictionary, Calendar, Calculator, Clock (to monitor your time)
  • Notepads, various writing utensils
  • Stapler, staple remover, paper clips, highlighters
  • Mirror — to monitor your well being, remember to smile

Don’t underestimate the power of your headset. Denise Lile, Dealer Sales Program Manager with Plantronics, Inc. of Santa Cruz, CA relays this research: "When used correctly, headsets can help improve ergonomics in the office and at home. A recent workforce ergonomics study found that 67 percent of headset users reported a decrease in the severity of neck, back and shoulder discomfort while talking on the phone."

Mighty 'Mo Moves Your Forward

In addition to your basic supplies, you will need motivation!

  • Quotes, sayings and words of wisdom posted nearby
  • Inspirational photos of your loved one(s), idol, mentor or fans
  • Motivational motto, slogan or mantra
  • Toys, puzzles and games to stimulate creativity, absorb nervous energy
  • Humorous cartoons, comics and zany headlines to relieve stress
  • Pictures of your pets
  • Favorite coffee mug for your libation of choice

As for raw materials, don’t forget the basics:

  • Water — room temperature fluid to keep hydrated
  • Coffee, tea or sarsaparilla — Whatever floats your boat
  • Mints — smell sweet, sound sweet!

Make It You-nique!

And now it’s time to personalize your work area. Employ expressions of individuality to further personalize your environment:

  • Sculpture
  • Shower curtain (since the best thinking is done in the shower!)
  • Crime scene tape and/or chalk outline (humor)
  • Lava lamp, Ikebana or tchochkie (Yiddish term for toy item)

You’ll find that your environment informs your experience as a sales person. When you create a powerful work environment where all your resources are at your beckons call you’ll become powerful, feel potent and be productive.

"I coach my sales reps to create a just-in-case toolkit to always stay ahead of their callers" says Fortunata Hermoso, District sales manager for Cingular Wireless in Pleasanton, CA. "Sales is like a chess match and I want my reps thinking several moves ahead. Their toolkit should have rate plans, pricing, key phone numbers and phraseology needed to answer whatever questions might arise."

Fortunata instills in her sales force the importance of reducing action items resulting from calls: "In the implication game the more you can address while on the phone the less work you’ll be required to complete thereafter. That’s how you win the game of sales!"

Sales is about routines, confidence and diligence. The more organized and optimized your work environment is the better you’ll be able to consistently make your calls, write your letters and thank-you notes, generate sales and endless referrals. So tool up and sell!

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contact Craig by email: Craig@ExpressionsOfExcellence.com
or by phone: (510) 547-0664.

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