As the world moved from 'Trusted Advisors' to 'Strategic Partners', the essential skills needed to fully understand your clients, their business and their objectives are fundamental selling skills.
Yes, sales is seen as a dirty word, however putting the needs and interests of current and potential clients at the heart of your own strategy are among the essential skills used to build meaningful, and lasting relationships based on mutual understanding, trust and integrity.
If you don't like the word, don't use it, but knowing, and deploying the skills used by successful people in everyday life will have significant and positive impacts at every level.
Even if you’ve studied at the best business schools, it’s likely that your curriculum underemphasised one of the most important skills you’ll ever need: sales. If you think about it, we sell every single day. When we ask our boss to approve a budget, we’re selling. When we negotiate bedtime hours with our kids, we’re selling. When we negotiate alimony, we’re selling. When we ask a flight attendant to change our seat, we’re selling. Anytime we ask someone to do something for us which is in our best interest but not obviously in theirs, we’re selling. And yet most of us, despite our fancy degrees, have no idea how go out and get people to buy something from us.