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To excel in any industry you can name, sales training is essential–even in lending. No one at Lendistry knows more about sales than our Executive Vice President, Kathy Gonzales. Earlier this week, we learned more about Kathy’s background. Today, we are here to pick up some top sales tips from the best in the business.

Gonzales has been at the executive level for over 15 years. She has worked for large national banks and mortgage companies, regional and community banks, credit unions, and has balanced her focus between both consumer and business banking. She is particularly proud that, as part of a team of six, she helped grow Plaza Bank from $450MM to $1.3B. Here at Lendistry, Kathy is the leader of our sales team, where she builds relationships with new and existing clients who want to start, grow, or acquire small businesses.

At a lending firm, the role of a salesperson is a balancing act. While the mission of the lending firm is to fund small businesses so they can grow and nurture their communities, risk has to be considered in the price of a loan so the firm can continue to do what it does best well into the future. Gonzales adds that providing businesses with funding, even in smaller amounts, helps them improve their financial record and receive traditional funding later.

“What we do at Lendistry comes from a place inside each of us that is committed to helping businesses thrive and contribute to the economy by providing jobs and needed services. The trickle down effect of what Lendistry does makes me feel great when I put my head on my pillow and call it a night.”

So how do you succeed in sales and achieve both relationships and results? According to Kathy Gonzales, successful sales are the culmination of many skills:

  1. The most critical skill is the ability to build a rapport with people. This involves having a great demeanor and being interested in other people. Being a great listener will gain many a salesperson much more benefit than they ever realized.
  2. Being a great communicator can’t be left on the sidelines. I’ve spoken to groups as large as 5,000 and as small as 10, and 9 times out of 10 they liked that I made great eye contact, liked my stories, and noticed that I worked the room and engaged with people. People focus on what interests them, so we have to be interesting and have a compelling story that creates a sense of urgency to buy from us.
  3. There has to be a connection between the seller and buyer in which each understands the benefits to each in the relationship.  
  4. You have to be able to strategically plan, then execute around the decided tactics. While building the plan, focus on the goals to be accomplished: who are we prospecting for and does the prospect fit the model of our best and most successful prior sales? The desire to achieve goals must be greater than the willingness to settle for less than can be achieved.  
  5. None this makes any sense without knowing your products and services inside and out.
  6. Time management, which shouldn’t ever be left out, is likely the key to everything else because without the quality execution at a volume that nets out the 1 sale out of every 10 interactions, there is no success.