The Power of Ethical Selling
By author and sales trainer, Fred Copestake.
"Good people doing good things in a good way" – that's an expression I often use when speaking at podcasts, webinars, or keynotes.
On the surface, it might seem straightforward – matching the right person with the right activity to achieve the right outcomes, something every sales manager dreams of. But there's a deeper layer to this concept. It's about having inherently decent individuals who genuinely care about their customers' best interests. It's about making a meaningful impact, not just in what they do but also in how they do it – effectively, honestly, and ethically.
This idea has been at the heart of my work over the past few years. It's a theme that runs through my first book, "Selling Through Partnering Skills," where I advocate for salespeople to adopt a more collaborative approach. With 23 years of experience, 14 trips around the world, visits to 36 countries, and interactions with over 10,000 salespeople, I've witnessed the evolution of sales and the challenges faced by sales professionals today. To succeed, they must adapt to the changing times and embrace what's most effective in working with today's customers.
My second book, "Hybrid Selling," reinforces the message that salespeople must incorporate various elements into their approach to truly serve and add value to their customers – and do so ethically. As my thinking has evolved, I've come to realise that ethics might be the key to success in sales. It's not just about being a good person; it's about doing what actually works. The more I delved into this, the more I noticed it's a missing element for many.
Bringing ethics into our sales approach might sound old-fashioned or too idealistic, especially in high-pressure environments, but none of these assumptions are accurate. Applying ethical thinking and actions can significantly impact our sales results – it's what customers want.
Ethical selling entails conducting sales activities with morality, social responsibility, honesty, transparency, and integrity. It goes beyond individual transactions, prioritising trust-building, customer well-being, and contributing positively to society and the environment. Ethical selling demands upholding ethical standards throughout the sales process.
The ETHICAL model is our roadmap to understanding and applying ethical principles in a way that boosts sales:
- Empathetic Communication: Engage in empathetic and active communication to understand customer needs.
- Transparency and Integrity: Operate with honesty and transparency, providing accurate information.
- Holistic Value-Centric Approach: Prioritise a holistic approach that focuses on customer value and needs.
- Informed Decision-Making: Ensure customers make informed decisions, respecting their autonomy.
- Collaborative Relationship Building: Forge collaborative and long-lasting customer relationships.
- Adaptive Negotiation: Approach negotiations ethically and adaptively for win-win outcomes.
- Learning and Growth: Embrace continuous learning and growth to stay informed and improve.
Before you dive in, ask yourself: Are you a good person? Do you want to do good things? Do you want to act in a good way?
If your answer is yes, then get started on the journey toward ethical selling, where doing good and achieving success go hand in hand.
Sales and leadership training experts, Maguire Training offers a new “Ethical Selling” course, combining decades of industry-leading knowledge and forward-thinking techniques to elevate your sales techniques. Register for their free, 60-minute, virtual event on Wednesday 25th October, “The Benefits of Ethical Selling”, briefly showcasing the power of ethical selling, you can register here.