Kym Cousins – an international #1 Amazon best selling author, speaker and qualified coach who empowers business owners
There are so many misconceptions about introverts, but they actually have a huge advantage over extroverts that makes them the perfect sales person
According to sales coach Kym Cousins, introverts typically want to run and hide when it comes to the S word, believing they are not good at this business development skill.
“The last thing an introvert wants to do is stand up in front of people and sell, or to pick up the phone to call a new prospect. They’d rather poke themselves in the eye with a stick,” she said.
“There are so many misconceptions about introverts – they are anti-social, shy, unfriendly or scared to look you in the eye – but they actually have a huge advantage over extroverts that makes them the perfect sales person.”
That superpower is attached to the side of their head – their ears.
In 2008, the Journal of Motor Behavior published a study that revealed introverts take a longer time to process information than extroverts – meaning they absorb information more thoughtfully than extroverts.
This means introverts are great listeners, according to Kym, as a self-confessed introvert.
“The biggest difference between an extrovert and an introvert is how they focus on their inner and outer worlds. It has nothing to do with how confident or social you are. Extroverts prefer to talk things out to understand them and introverts listen and then respond,” Kym said.
“The challenge in a sales environment, besides the bad rap sales has received over the years, is extroverts have been typically employed in sales roles because they seemingly have a gift of the gab. But what customers and clients really want from the sales person they are engaging with is to be listened to and heard.
“Selling is not about how much you can talk at people; it is about how much you hear what they say so you can ask questions, uncover vital information and can find solutions to the problems being presented.
“When an introvert becomes aware of their own strengths in listening and being very considered in their responses and proposals to customers, they are unstoppable.”
Another introverted superpower is their passion for their product or service and deep knowledge of their customers’ problems. This superpower connects them powerfully to the solutions for the customer, and builds a foundation of trust.
Kym said ‘silence is golden’ “If you ask a customer, who has been subjected to incessant talking from an extroverted salesperson, they’d agree. If the salesperson is too busy talking about themselves and how great their products are, instead of asking the customer if they have questions or even what their needs are in the first place, customers may feel they’ve been ‘sold’ something that didn’t address their real needs,” she said.
“It’s always good to remember the mantra – two ears and one mouth, so we should listen twice as much as speak’.”
Being in ‘lockdown’ in 2020 was considered ‘nirvana’ from most introverts in sales roles. They relished in being able to spend more one on one time interacting online with clients, peers and leaders, from the sanctuary of their office, without the distractions of crowded networking events, overpowering boardrooms, team meetings, or busy coffee shops.
“Being able to focus on their client or customer through an online platform like Zoom or engaging online with their network via LinkedIn (which experienced a huge growth in 2020), was more efficient because they are excellent at one on one relationships and focused conversations,” Kym said.
“Sadly, there is often a stigma attached to being an introvert, but once you understand your abilities and embrace your strengths, you see what superpowers you have and that your introvert customers will appreciate how you communicate.”