Service is Better than Sales: Flipping the Sales Paradigm

I’ve never thought of myself as a sales person. Actually, growing up I thought sales was the root of all evil. I interpreted sales as trying to push something on somebody through manipulation and negotiation. I thought it was dishonest at its core. But I was missing something critical in my perspective.

I started RevenFlo by doing web writing work for companies through a freelance bidding site. While doing that, I saw so many people who had a need for a good writer, and I wanted to write. So, I would explain how I could help solve their problem or meet their need, and they would hire me. I didn’t even realize that this was sales.

As my business grew, I found myself needing to “increase sales” for the company. We even tried hiring sales people. This always failed. The reason (I believe) is because if we focus on growing our “sales team” then we are focusing on how to grow OUR revenue. We are not focusing on how to solve other people’s problems.

So, we’ve stuck with what works for us –  do good work and show it to people; help people who are interested to see solutions where they see problems.

If we want to develop more robust applications for clients, then let’s build one for us and demonstrate what we can do. If we want to do more videos for clients, then let’s just start doing more videos and showing them to more people. If we want to manage more clients’ social media marketing, then let’s just start doing more social media management and show people what we are doing. The people who are interested in our cooking will come to sit at the table, then we can hear them and identify places where they are experiencing difficulties or have opportunities. We can then help them see more clearly their path forward, even if there is no sale to be made.

Flipping the paradigm of sales is more comfortable for us, and it works. We don’t solicit. We don’t have sales people, per se. We just work hard and participate in our community, and people come to us.