How Vulnerability Increases Sales
As a woman in sales, it's often hard to find a persona that speaks to who you are and what you want to accomplish. In a male-dominated field, it can be easy to assume you should be one of the guys, so to speak, throwing up walls and taking a tough, aggressive stance, even when the situation doesn't warrant it.
This, of course, can be a mistake. Stepping into a traditionally masculine atmosphere doesn't necessarily mean taking a male role in and adopting a male persona. Doing so explicitly can actually be detrimental to your success, especially if your identity as a woman is less bark and more bite. That's why one of the most powerful tools in your arsenal is the gift of vulnerability.
Vulnerability is often associated with a negative connotation. Being vulnerable translates to being weak, being fragile, or being unable to stand up to criticism or handle challenging situations. Vulnerability is often associated with womanhood, while strength is associated with being a man.
This isn't the only way to look at vulnerability, however. In a more positive light, vulnerability can be associated with openness, honesty, and sincerity. People who are willing to expose their weaknesses can be seen as genuine and less likely to lead a buyer astray, a quality that can be highly valued in sales transactions.
Current trends in business are starting to show the power of vulnerability and the benefits that can come with putting yourself out there and showing who you really are – not who you want others to see.
Getting Ahead With Vulnerability
Vulnerability as a sales or morale-building tactic is on the forefronts of evolving business practices, yielding a rise in CEOs communicating with the lowest level employees and offering an honest perspective on the way a company is progressing. Instead of sticking to strictly business, leaders are now sharing stories about their family members and personal lives, opening themselves up in order to build relationships and encourage growth.
In sales, the same connections can be used to win a sale and see successes in your business. Instead of putting on a facade like many salesmen are wont to do, try opening up. Use your own ideas, experiences, and personality traits to connect with customers on a more personal level, showing who you are instead of what you have to sell. These tactics can build trust, allowing prospective buyers to see why you care about your wares.
Using Vulnerability to Your Advantage
When you pitch your product, don't stick to a simple spiel and an aloof attitude. Instead, open up. Find a way to tap into your buyer's thoughts and feelings by leaving yourself vulnerable, showing that you aren't like other salespeople – you're honest and truthful about your products and yourself. This can mean anything from sharing a personal story to admitting a mistake you made, as long as it humanizes you.
As a woman, vulnerability is likely to be in your nature. As a saleswoman, you can use your innate femininity to harness this personality trait and use it to get ahead – in business and in life.