Sales is all about establishing a deeper connection with the clients and effectively engaging with them. Just having a thorough knowledge and understanding of the product or business is not enough to close a deal, sales representatives need to go beyond that and establish a connection through effective communication to form rapport and trust. Emotional intelligence can be a powerful tool for sales reps to achieve the same.
Understanding Emotional Intelligence
Emotional intelligence (EI) is one of the most commonly misconceived words. To understand what EI is, it is important to first understand what emotional intelligence isn’t. Being emotionally intelligent is more than just being a people-pleaser or open about your feelings. EI is not merely having better social skills, it is something that goes beyond that. Daniel Goleman defines it as a person’s capability to comprehend, control, and identify their own emotions as well as those of others. It is a helpful tool for managing personal and professional relationships and maintaining one’s mental and physical health.
According to a medical research paper, it consists of 5 components – self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy, and social skills. A sales professional’s success is built upon these five fundamental elements of emotional intelligence.
How is emotional intelligence related to sales?
It is impossible to exaggerate the value of EI in sales. Customers are prone to buy from salespeople who can comprehend their requirements. Salespeople with high emotional intelligence may establish a connection with their customers by reading and responding to their non-verbal and emotional cues.
Building Rapport through Emotional Intelligence
Emotional intelligence is crucial for developing genuine relationships and leaving a lasting impression on clients. By having a better understanding of the other person’s emotions, one can form a deeper connection. Any sales rep can appeal to a range of personalities with the help of skills like active listening, recognizing nonverbal clues, and modifying communication methods and tone. Emotional intelligence is the key to transforming the sales process from a monotonous chase of a lead to a relational holistic approach.
Emotional Intelligence in Sales Leadership
Effective leadership in a sales team demands a nuanced understanding of emotional intelligence. EI is the bedrock of sales leadership as it not only helps in resolving conflicts, but also fosters efficient communication to turn a group of people into a motivated and unified sales force. Additionally, emotional intelligence promotes more efficient and productive management of your own emotions. This means having the ability to restrain impulsive behavior, control anxiety and stress, and remain composed under stress; all the qualities that are essential for a leader. Leaders possessing higher emotional intelligence or emotional quotient are also adept at handling challenging conversations and rejections during interaction with both their team and clients.
Working in sales inevitably involves dealing with rejections and objections. Emotional intelligence fosters a higher sense of self awareness and empathy, both of which can be a great asset in handling such situations. Salespeople with higher EI or emotional quotient can better process rejections and not take them personally. They are less likely to be angered, sad, or stressed because of repeated rejections. As emotionally intelligent people are strongly driven, they would rather view this as an opportunity to fine-tune their approach and persevere more to close the deal instead of just giving up.
In conclusion, the role of emotional intelligence in sales is transformative. Emotional intelligence is an essential skill for sales executives who wish to succeed in their careers. Executives can establish better bonds with their clients, gain their trust, and eventually close more deals by being able to recognize, control, and sympathize with their own emotions as well as those of others.