The mention of salesmanship may evoke a shallow idea of taking a product to market and persuading the buyer to settle for it. That’s only the basic understanding of the concept. However, if you get the better understanding of what salesmanship entails then you easily start to understand why this is the one essential skill that founders really need to learn.
- Salesmanship entails creating a narrative that succeeds in making an audience instantly understand and connect with the values of a company other than just introduce the product or service in focus.
- A salesman actually proceeds to deliver that narrative to various people.
- Ultimately he or she closes a sale, essentially from the narrative delivered.
It’s from the efforts of a salesperson and delivery of the company narrative that the business earns engagement and acquires market. As such, selling is critically important to multiple stages of the growth of a company.
Is the CEO work any different? Here are some key areas where salesmanship will be essential in the work of a CEO.
Hiring initial team
As a fonder, the only solid thing you have is a great idea. In most cases, it’s not as great to anyone else but you. It takes some salesmanship to make other people see this idea in the same lens as you and actually get to share your vision.
It takes the same quality to convince persons with the rare skills your start-up needs, who already have well-paid jobs to actually give up their current jobs and join you.
Except for lenders like FAM that do not attach a lot of bottlenecks to their financial services, it takes quite some persuasion to get a micro loan from banks and other traditional lenders to finance a start-up.
Whatever your business model is, you are seeking to have someone somewhere to pay you money for it.
There may not be a problem in the long run as you’ll be having a team of well-trained sales force to run this process. You may alternatively develop a complex system which allows people to manage their spending on your platform if you are offering an entirely self-service product.
However, before you get that far, there are the days of starting up where you have to run all the footwork by yourself. It will be you to figure out exactly who your buyer is and how to make them actually buy your offering.