Guest Post
S. Anthony Iannarino

S. Anthony Iannarino

Catalyst. Instigator. Agitator.


Twitter: iannarino

You have to be a professional salesperson if you are going to create and win opportunities. You must also be a value creator. You have to be someone that your dream client trusts to help them move their business forward. You can do all of this while still being yourself.

Some salespeople believe that being a value creating, professional salesperson means that you have to be boring, serious, and sober. It doesn’t.

People Want to Buy from People

People want to buy from real people. They want to work with people that they like. They want to work with interesting people that can help make difficult work more fun while still making a difference.

If you aren’t your whole, true, authentic self on a sales call, you don’t come across as interesting, likeable, or fun. Instead you come across as staid, boring, and uninteresting. It doesn’t make you professional to have this sort of presence, and it doesn’t help to have a poor bedside manner. No wants a relationship with someone that isn’t any fun to be around.

If you have a sense of humor, you should have a sense of humor. If you are a little irreverent, you should be a little irreverent. If you have the kind of self-effacing sense of humor that eliminates stressful situations on contact, you should use that to be human. Whatever it is that makes you interesting, be that.

Whatever it is that makes you interesting and human is an advantage in selling. Be who you really are. That’s part of what helps build relationships, and it’s part of how we connect with each other.

Give Them a License to Be Themselves

This is a strange little observation about face-to-face sales and being authentic. But the more of yourself that you let show through when you sell, the more you give your dream client contacts a license to be themselves.

If you allow your personality out, you make your dream client contact feel like they have permission to let their personality out. Your dream client contacts (mostly) want an opportunity to be real. You make it easier for them to let their guard down.

A few of your dream client contacts may be sober and serious. But most of them aren’t. Some of them will get so real that you’ll wish you could revoke the license you have given them to be themselves. But mostly, you make it easier to buy from you because you give your client an idea of what it’s going to be like to work with you, and you give them permission to be real.

Get real. Be yourself. Have fun. And make it easy for your dream client to enjoy working with you.


Are you your whole, real, authentic self on sales calls?

Are you sometimes too series, too professional, and too boring in the name of being professional?

Can you be real and still be a value creator? How does it help?

What message do you give people about what it’s going to be like to work with you?


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