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Selling in Color

Jun 1, 2021

For some people, sales is in their DNA. Today’s guest, Jose Quiroz, is one of those people. He is a digital operations expert who comes from a long line of salespeople, even though he wasn’t initially aware. But as the son of an entrepreneur, Jose quickly learned to use his natural sales abilities to create opportunities for himself.

Two things inspired Jose to begin selling:

  • First, was Mark Cuban saying that sales is about helping people. “You have a problem. I got a solution for you.”
  • The second was Jose’s trial and error methodology. He had to figure out how to sell, communicate, and analyze situations. 
  • The biggest thing that resonated with Jose was the importance of listening instead of talking.

A time Jose failed:

  • Jose was trying to penetrate a local market, and through his Chamber of Commerce connections, he met a local retailer who had a name for herself.
  • They had a conversation, but Jose went into it with the intent to sell rather than to understand.
  • They talked over each other, didn’t see eye to eye, and the conversation ended with awkward tension.
  • A few months later, through the work he did with people around her, she gave him business. But he fired her as a client two years later because of those same communication issues.

The takeaways?

  • Understand when you are in a sales call and when you aren’t. Don’t assume one way or another until you’ve had a chance to learn from the individual.
  • Be quiet and listen to the other person beyond what they're saying to you. Look at their mannerisms and what's in between the lines to find information that might not be as apparent.
  • A smart salesperson comes with ammunition; they understand who the individual is, what moves them, what drives them, and their interests.

Learning those takeaways led to Jose’s success.

  • His team recently sold a national company on a regional part of the business, and they were invited to do a national pitch.
  • Jose knew he needed to take a deep dive and research everything he could about the company. Understand who the key players are, who's the decision-maker, and what influences them.
  • He went into this meeting with the intent to listen and tell a story, not just to sell.

Jose’s advice for someone of color to be successful in sales:

  • Realize that sales is everywhere around you. You're always selling; whether trying to get a date or job, there are many instances you sell yourself to others.
  • Take advantage of business and sales development opportunities. You’ll learn a lot about yourself and practice getting out of your comfort zone.
  • Jose believes in reciprocity: The more you give, the more you get back. 
  • If you want to go into sales, know that there will be trials and tribulations. It will take time, and you’ll need to develop a thick skin, but it will be well worth it.

Want to get in touch with Jose? Connect with him on LinkedIn, and check out his company’s website!

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