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Selling Yourself
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Selling Yourself

Have you ever learnt to sell yourself? Or does the thought of it cause you to cringe? There are no two ways about it – everyone needs to learn to market themselves in order to get on successfully in life. You doubt it? Then the chances are you are not as successful as you would like to be.

Selling yourself is a skill we use in everyday situations – making and keeping friends, getting your children to be co-operative, negotiating a price in a market, negotiating a salary raise, deciding who gets the last chocolate in the box. Everything that involves someone other than yourself will involve some form of marketing yourself.

Now for some, maybe even most, the thought of selling conjures up images of the hardcore salesperson who almost batters the potential consumer into acceptance of whatever item they are selling. Unsurprisingly, most of us are uncomfortable with that role but, and this is a big but, selling yourself does not have to be like that.

The best way is to sell yourself in a way that suits your character and personality. If you are not a forceful character then trying to become a hard seller will not work for you and the person you are speaking to will sense that and instinctively feel ‘No’. In time that feeling will become apparent to you too!

So what can help you learn to put yourself forward in the best possible light? There are 2 main issues?

Do you like yourself?

If you have not convinced yourself that you are worth it (As L’oreal adverts like to tell us!), then people you speak to (assuming you get the courage to do that!) will pick this up. Again, they will know that something does not match up and so they internally are in disagreement with you. They may not even really know why. Spend some time working out the best bits of you and always keep this in the forefront of your mind regardless of what you are doing each day. When you find yourself thinking self-pitying thoughts, bring out these better bits of you and replace the other kind.

Do they like you?

So having decided you are not all bad really (as if there was any doubt!), how do you present yourself? This involves the way you look and also the way you present the idea or concept or decision to the other party.

In terms of the way you look, obviously this is less relevant (but not irrelevant) when dealing with members of your family but this is very relevant in a business setting. What image do you want to have? Do your clothes, accessories give off the impression you want others to have of you? Or do people look at you and immediately think you are not to be taken seriously. Turning up in your scruffy stay-at-home jeans when you are trying to give the impression of a business magnate, is probably not doing you any favours!

How enthused are you about your idea, plan, concept – The manner in which you present the information can make the difference between someone choosing to agree with you and someone disagreeing? After all, if you give the impression that you are uncertain about the validity of your information then unsurprisingly, others doubt you too.

What words do you use? There are reams and reams of books written out there about persuasion, influence and selling. Why not take the time to read one or two. Just one great idea could mean the difference between a ‘yes’ and a ‘no’ in any discussion.

In conclusion, selling yourself is a skill we all need in order to progress easily in life so take the time to learn how to do it well. You will be surprised where your life will be a year from now, if you try.

Always remember that your personality is your big asset. Do not try to emulate another person. Real personality comes from the heart.

Thomas J. Watson

Street Talk

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