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Every strength becomes a weakness if it is exaggerated. Every strong salesperson stands in their own way if they do not know their weaknesses. In this series I describe prototype salespeople and give tips for improvement. Are you by any chance one of the emphatic relationship managers?

They are the “glue” of every team: Empathetic and warm-hearted, they sense how their colleagues are doing. They maintain long-term relationships with customers and do almost everything for them. Therefore, they are loved and appreciated by their clients. And fortunately, this type of salesperson does not strive for change and often remains loyal to their company and their contact persons for decades. Where advice and support are the main focus, this type of salesperson is just right. 

Well, did you recognize yourself? Sometimes it’ s not easy for you, that’ s how serious you are about looking after your customers, isn’ t it? For them you even work some late shifts and always do more than you have to. But most of them thank you for it. And often these relationships go beyond the professional. That’s fine as long as there are no changes coming up. Because those are really upsetting you, aren’t they?

In this respect, some superiors and colleagues regard you as a drag on the job. You just like doing things the way you’ve always done them. Not only do you find it difficult to innovate, you even try to avoid it. In addition, your inability to say “no” will be fatal for you and others. As a result, you keep taking on too much – and sometimes you even feel like you are being taken advantage of. In such a case, no one ever notices how much you are already working. Unfair, isn’t it?

To make life a little easier for you and those around you, here are a few tips:

  1. Learn to communicate your boundaries. It would be nice if people would notice when they run over you, but that’s not the reality. Only you can communicate if you cannot or do not want to do something. And also your needs will only be met if you express them clearly. Sometimes a clear “no” is part of this. I promise you: the more often you practice it, the easier it becomes.
  2. Approach new things step by step. A new customer database, a new job assignment, a new product area – change is part of working life.  Your chance is to jump on the bandwagon of change early so that you have enough time to move forward in small steps. Dare to ask and get help. But then you have to act yourself. Nobody can do it for you. 
  3. Have more faith in yourself. If you look back over your life, you will always find examples where you learned things that you did not believe you could accomplish. Think also of personal challenges that you mastered. Often these were situations in which you had no choice but to jump in. And then you did it, didn’t you? You can do that again and again and not only when the circumstances force you to, but much better when you decide to.

Your way of doing your job and maybe doing other things in your life as well, has many advantages. At some point in your life it even proved to be the most helpful solution strategy you had. However, if you realize yourself that you are repeatedly reaching your limits, it is worth working on your personal development. But if you have tried to overcome these limits and are not getting anywhere, I will be happy to help you as a coach: https://franziskabrandtbiesler.ch/coaching/    

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