Wednesday, January 20, 2010

How to sell design with personality in mind

Do designers need sales skills? 
Designers do need to have great selling skills.  I first studied selling skills in the 80’s when I was a kitchen designer. The first course I ever did on selling skills was called Non Manipulative Selling. This sort of approach I found to be to my liking.

Over the next few blogs I intend to discuss the fascinating subject of sales and personality. To do this I feel it is important to outline my understanding of personality types and the impact I think this has on sales techniques. In this blog I will introduce you to the personality types. 

Non Manipulative Selling
The non manipulative selling method I found suited my philosophy. I hate pushy sales techniques. Having an understanding of people was the basis of this method of selling. Before I moved into interior design I studied art. I still love to paint. While studying art I came to the decision to keep art as a hobby and find another occupation which involved working with people as well as providing an outlet for my creative energy. I am a people sort of person one of the reasons I studied psychology and love working with people. 

A few years later we bought our first house. I decided to study interior design so I could decorate our new home with professional flare. I fell in love with design did a number of courses and have had a passion for design ever since. 

Many methods of categorising personalities
The first thing to do when meeting a client is to find out what type of person the client is. To achieve this it helps to have an understanding of the different types of personalities. In the Non Manipulative Selling course they divided people into four basic categories. For example one category of people were called socialisers. I can’t remember all the terms they used. However since then I have discovered numerous methods of categorising personality styles. I have studied a number of different methods over the years and have found it a fascinating subject.

It starts with Hippocrates
Most of the theories are based on the theories of Hippocrates. He identified and labelled four basic personality types over 2000 years ago. The four different types he called sanguine, choleric, pphlegmatic and melancholy.

Over the years I have found many methods have developed using the Hippocrates theories. They give the personality traits different labels. Many businesses use the study on personalities to select and train staff. Florence Litterer has written a number of books on the subject including ‘Personality Plus’. If you want some fun go to you will find a quiz on the subject connected to dating. I’m happily married no date for me. But you may find it a fun exercise.

In the next blog I will discuss the sanguine personality.

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