Character. You can tell a lot about a person based on their character. Our character describes who we are to the core. We’re all familiar with what character means, but do we practice it in our everyday lives? Our character supports our personal and professional lives. The things we say and do reflect who we are and what we stand for every second of the day. If you had to describe your character in your professional life, would you be proud to shout it from the rooftop or would you rather not share how you carry yourself from day to day in the office?

For salespeople, it can sometimes be difficult to display good character in all situations because there is a lot of pressure to close deals. It may not be that you’re doing something illegal in your role, but maybe you’re pushing a prospect into something they don’t need. It can be easy to fall into the trap of blurring the lines of your character to close a deal.

Anthony Iannarino recently wrote an article titled, “Don’t Do It Because It Is Wrong. Not Because of Social Media” and in it, he talks about how a person’s character is non-negotiable. In today’s social media-driven world, many sales reps are stepping into the realm of social selling and get into the mindset that you shouldn’t do something because you might hurt your reputation due to social media exposure. This article calls it like it is – he calls the bluff on excuses. Social selling is now a big part of the sales cycle, which means you’re going to be on social media – make sure your character is intact.

character & social selling

“Character isn’t negotiable. It isn’t something that you have when you believe you might be found out, and lack when you believe no one is looking. You have character, or you do not.”

~ Anthony Iannarino

Does your social selling strategy reflect the character traits you want to be known for in your industry, as a thought leader, or as a person? Are you doing whatever is necessary to close a deal – no matter the cost?

Every facet of social selling isn’t on display for everyone to see. There are aspects of social selling that are more intimate between you and the prospect. It’s easy to show the character traits you want to be known for in the public areas of social selling because it’s out there for everyone to see and share…so you’re more aware of how it could hurt your reputation publicly; therefore, you may be more careful in your words and actions. However, do you apply that same character to your private conversations with prospects? If not, maybe you should re-evaluate your process.

“Good character prevents you from ever having to worry about a bad reputation. And character is worth referring.”

~ Anthony Iannarino

Becoming a trusted advisor should be one of your social selling objectives. If you’re not displaying good character in your approach, then chances are you’ll never achieve the status of a trusted advisor. When it comes right down to it, sales is still all about relationships. In a relationship, it’s important to build trust and that all stems from your character.

Alanna Jackson is a founding partner at Jackson Marketing Services, a marketing firm located in Dunedin, Florida. In addition to her work at Jackson Marketing Services, Alanna is a founding member and editor of RabidOfficeMonkey.com. You can follow her on Twitter @alanna_jax. and on Google+.