Women in sales have a natural advantage.
When you think about salespeople, you probably picture men. History and Hollywood have made sure of that. Yet, many saleswomen outperform their male colleagues, and many men have admitted that to me when the other guys were out of earshot.
Women in sales understand that relationships are built on trust, and we have the savvy and patience to foster strong personal and business relationships. That’s why we’re great at getting referrals. We don’t wait for clients to refer us. We understand the power of proactively asking. We also understand that to get referrals, we must continue to invest in building our referral networks.
But despite our natural advantages, many saleswomen still struggle to get their voices heard. They get eyerolls when they advocate for stepping back from a quick, knee-jerk solution to assess the implications for the company and for employees. They get accused of being risk-averse or overreacting.
Salesmen should certainly be on the hook for shoring up communication gaps between the genders, but so should saleswomen. Women in sales need to take it upon themselves and learn how to communicate with men so they get heard—taking charge of their careers and committing to building their referral networks—no matter what anyone says. We need to find mentors who guide us. We need to stop complaining about the Old Boys’ Club and focus on what it takes to get work done.
This post by Taice Perrotti, VP of Business Development at Spiro, reinforces what saleswomen do really well. Sometimes, we just need to hear that message. Here’s what she has to say:
Women in Sales — Female Leaders and What Sets Them Apart
By Taice Perrotti
When you picture most (or all) of the cult sales movies, the main character is always a sales guy. And the qualities most people attribute to salespeople are more typically associated with these leading male roles. Unfortunately, these stereotypical characters aren’t normally what wins you deals, and probably are giving the sales guys out there a bad reputation.
Not only do we need to change these stereotypes, but we also need to recognize that many of the top performing salespeople are female. And there’s a reason for that. The qualities you need to close more sales are gender neutral and all focus on relationship building. It’s not a man versus woman thing, but rather whomever is better at building a genuine rapport and delivering what the customer needs.
So I thought about the women in sales that I know, and what makes them so successful. Here are the seven things the female sales leaders around me all have in common that are helping them crush their goals.