What do you do?

December 24, 2018


Like everyone else, Sales and Service employees are asked: “What do you do?” The typical response is: “I am a Sales consultant / service / parts advisor at company XYZ; I sell cars / I sell parts and repairs.”
Now, with the perception on sales and service being “someone taking my money”, this reply is a big turn off.

Most of the time, professionals think it is about the value they offer, and not actual sales, and they are right; however, what gives value to the sales profession from a first impression?


From a buyer’s perspective, and we are all buyers, when we buy something, we buy something for it’s emotional and/or economic value, in other words, we need it, or we want it. A need is a must have, and a want is a nice to have.
For example, I want a genuine Italian pizza for dinner, but actually, what I need is some sort of nutrition.
But what are the things that I actually got – from a need and want perspective?
From a “need” perspective, the pizza has dough, tomato, cheese, vegetables, and whatever style I chose, and all those are nutrients that my body needs to survive. So, my motive to eat the pizza is survival.
From a “want” perspective, Italy makes the best pizzas, the dough of the Italian pizza is special, it has a thin crest, Italian cheese, and basil, to bring all the flavor out when cooked in a special oven, and that makes my taste buds explode. My motive here is emotions.


Taking this example forward, what do we buy a car, a part, or do a service for?
“I like the design”, “I like the power”, “I like the comfort”, “I like the options” are all replies that come without thinking. But in reality, they link to more specific buying motives* such as: performance, reliability, economy, image, comfort, convenience, safety, security, and enjoyment. (*People are different and hence the level of importance of each buying motive differ from one person to another.)


So in fact, when a person buys a car, they did not just buy “a car”. Taking one type of customer as an example, they buy the convenience of transportation in a safe, comfortable, beautiful car that is reliable and economical.


The next time someone asks you what you do, what will your answer be?