Getting Yourself Wanted
[Sidenote: Show a Need For Your Services]
A great many salesmen mistakenly believe that if they can interest a prospect thoroughly in their goods, he is almost sure to buy. When this stage is reached, they think they only need to keep his interest growing to close the sale. If, instead, it drags on interminably, they are utterly at a loss regarding what more they should do to secure the order.
Do not fall into a similar error when selling true ideas of your best capabilities. Not only is it necessary that you induce your prospective employer’s interest in your personal qualifications, but you need to make him realize there is a present lack in his business which you can fill to his satisfaction. You must get yourself wanted.
You might make an excellent first impression on the man you have chosen as your future chief. He might listen attentively to your presentation of ideas, and question you so interestedly that you would expect him to say at any moment, “All right. The job is yours.” Then, instead of engaging your services, he might remark, “I’ll keep your name on file.” Or he might say, “I know a man who probably could use you. I’ll give you a note to him.” You would win a cordial farewell handshake from your prospect, but not an acceptance of your proposal to work with him. You would leave without the job. Your failure would be due to your inability to get yourself sufficiently wanted.
[Sidenote: See Yourself Through Your Prospect’s Eyes]
Now imagine yourself in the place of this employer. See your application through his eyes. Unless you can look at yourself from the prospect’s viewpoint, you may not comprehend your deficiency in salesmanship.
The employer upon whom you called said to himself while you were trying to sell your services, “Here is a very attractive man. He presents an interesting proposition. But I have no real need for such an employee; therefore it would be poor business for me to engage him, much as I should like to do so. I am sorry that at present I have no place for him in my organization. He’s a man I’d like to keep track of, so I’ll file his name and address for possible future reference. Meanwhile I’ll give him a note to my friend Smith. I hate to turn him down cold; he’s such a fine man.”
Evidently the employer did not feel a lack in his own business. You failed to make him realize any need for your services.
[Sidenote: Proving A Need]
Contrast with this illustration the case of an efficiency engineer who secured his chance to overhaul a factory by demonstrating to a manufacturer that he needed a new order-checking system. The engineer “beat” the old system and brought to the manufacturer’s office a lot of goods he had secured that could not be checked. His salesmanship compelled attention, induced thorough interest, and proved there was a hole that should be filled. When the lack was shown convincingly, the manufacturer wanted it satisfied. The sale of the engineer’s services was quickly closed.