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If you are naturally competitive, you should enjoy sales. There are many different definitions of the word 'sales', but for simplicity it can be defined as "the act of persuading a potential customer to commit to a course of action".
The basic elements of a sale are:
This is a two-way process. You will introduce yourself, your company, and your service. You will also need the person you're speaking with to introduce themselves to make sure you're speaking with the right person - i.e. a decision-maker. If not, you will need to speak to the decision-maker at some
Here you are checking whether the potential client is indeed a potential client - ie can they actually use your product/service? You also need to establish exactly what is important to a potential client, how they decide on a purchase, and the reasons behind this.
Promotion of product/service
This is selling the features of your product / service and explaining how will it benefit your potential client.
Establishment of interest
How interested is the customer? If the response is positive (and it should be if you've done the rest correctly), you can then establish whether there are any further barriers to doing business, and addressing these as they arise.
Having established an interest and broken down any other barriers to doing business, you then have to talk about price, and this will often involve negotiation. Sales people naturally push for the highest price to meet their targets and maximise their commission. Customers with good negotiation skills will want to get the salesperson down to the minimum price. The important thing a salesperson can do is to be able to justify a price to the customer in terms of quality and value.
The close is where you gain the customer commitment. Ideally, the close will be the time when the customer agrees to exchange his money for the products/services on offer. However, sometimes you will be closing for a meeting to discuss further and build a stronger relationship with the client.
Most sales, especially business-to-business, are carried out over a period of time, therefore it is highly unlikely that all the above will be achieved in one phone-call or visit. Many sales cycles are stretched out over a period of weeks or even months.