How to Sell as an Introvert

BY Jessica Helinski
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Whether you want to admit it or not, likeability and charisma play key roles in succeeding in sales. This can be worrisome for introverts who love to sell but may not feel confident about their socializing skills.

Luckily, there are some go-​to phrases that make it easier to win people over, per Bill Murphy, Jr., executive editor of TheMid​.com. “I'm a bit of an introvert,” he admits in an article for Inc. “…yet, I've learned to love meeting new people and engaging with strangers. My secret? I've got a mental cheat sheet of go-​to phrases that almost always provoke positive reactions with new people.” He graciously shares his list and gives pointers on how and why they work. His list is presented as a series, with different phrases categorized by groups (“enthusiasm,” “challenges,” etc).

For example, he groups the first set of phrases under “cordiality.” These phrases are your icebreakers, establishing a good first impression and setting the tone for the conversation. These are the most basic, go-​to phrases when first conversing with someone:

  • "Hello"/"Goodbye"/"Good morning." You may think these greetings are a no-​brainer, but Murphy reports that a surprising number of people simply don’t bother with them.
  • "I'm happy to see you."
  • "Please"/ "Thank you." Politeness is free and always appreciated.
  • "After you."
  • "You're welcome." Swap the usual “no problem” for this sincerer phrase.
  • "Dr./Professor/Officer/etc." Murphy notes that, “We live in an informal world for the most part, but trust me on this one. If someone has earned a degree or a position with a title, they've put a lot of their life's effort into achieving and perfecting it.”

These are just the basic phrases to start using, so check out Murphy’s entire article for all twenty-​five. He believes that once you start using these phrases, the more natural they will feel. And soon, you’ll find that socializing comes much easier. “I think most people who start using this system will quickly internalize it,” he writes. “You'll also find that you naturally replace the suggestions below with your own go-​to phrases — things that roll more naturally off your tongue.”