When I agreed to watch the football the other day with my friend Ian, I didn’t know I was about to see a big moment that changed football. The moment commentator started to criticize the female linesjudge, I cringed. Women are part of football today, I think most people accept that but for an eighties’ stalwart it was step to far. In his mind, as it was back his era, women had no place in football.
The commentators paid the price as both lost the jobs that they very much loved The world has changed, as it always consistently have. Again this is yet another lesson in history where the person who wasn’t flexible in updating their belief system gets left behind.
Just look in the past with Roger Bannister being the first man to break the 4 minute mile. This was epic at the time yet today, a 4 minute mile is considered “slow”.
Another example, Alan Sugar. I just finished his book. A great read actually.
It shows how Lord Sugar started out selling car aerials, then adapted to stereos. As customer demands changed, Amstrad tried selling phones. That didn’t work, so they changed again to selling computers to great success. Then as demand changed Amstrad moved to selling satellite dishes.
People who are flexible will succeed.
People who adapt to what is going on in the market place, who listen to what customers want will be the people who get results.
I have had to go through several changes during both my personal life and my career but every change has made me stronger.
I could have blamed the world for taking my Dad away from me when he was far too young.
I could have blamed the Italians for taking Paul Gascoigne away from my beloved Spurs.
It would have just been wasted energy though as I cannot change what has already happened.
I can adapt to the new situation.
I left a high paid job as I blamed someone else for holding me back in my career at that place of work. I blamed the economy for my business not going to plan in the early days. It was just wasted energy.
Instead I learnt the lesson from my experiences and made the changes I needed to in my own way of thinking and became stronger. And in my line of work, that has helped me continue to be successful in sales.
Be it doing telesales to SME’s business, face-to-face sales to big corporate companies and government bodies or working with feeling entrepreneurs and business owners. The lessons I have learnt have given me a set of habits that will always bring me results no matter what changes I have to face. So here are the five habits that enable me to be successful in sales:
1) “You Reap What You Sow”
I always have a choice in what I do. My life is my responsibility and every action I take is my decisions. I used to do what I thought other people wanted me to do and that approach dam near killed me with stress. If you are not controlling your own game, you cannot win. If someone else’s is in control the goal posts will always be moved.
If I am not getting the results I want, it is only me that has to change. As Tony Robbins says “all I need is within me now”!
2) “Can A Taxi Driver Understand Where You Want To Go”
When you order a taxi, you know where you want to go. You can clearly and concisely tell the driver your destination.
In terms of business, this means know and understand your figures. If you want to be a millionaire, how many sales do you need to make? How many appointments is that? How long will it take you?
3) “Don’t Be A Busy Idiot”
If you don’t know where you are going but are very busy, you are a bit of an idiot really.
When selling, every action you take can be measured and turned into a monetary term. I don’t subscribe to the “build it and they will come” mentality many business owners seemed to operate by. I much prefer to take control of my destiny and make sure every action I take contributes in a measured way to my success. I like to turn my actions into systems and outsource them so I can focus on what I do best and that is closing deals and delivering a great service to my customers.
4) “Never Leave A Bad Taste In The Mouth”
In my career I have met some great characters and one of them is a Sales Director called Paul. On one deal Paul has completely out-negotiated me yet I felt I have agreed an amazing deal.
Paul actually then gave me better terms on the deal and explained to me that he could have taken me and let me walk away happy but he knew eventually I would realize I have given too much away and be left with a bad taste in my mouth.
Paul didn’t want that as he knew I wouldn’t work with him again. He would rather agree a fairer deal, show trust and respect to each other and come do more business in the future.
I always treat both customers and suppliers with respect. There is no point in slamming a deal as the real success will always come when you get repeat business from your network.
5) “Walk A Mile In Their Shoes”
Always think customer first.
Your business is not about you. It is not about how great you are or how many qualifications you have.
Your business is there to earn you money as vehicle to you living the life you want.
People will not pay you money because you have letters after you name. They will pay you a lot of money because you have the reputation and experience to help them with their exact problem.
When people are in pain, or are desperate to get a specific feeling of happiness that is where you step in and serve them.
And there you have it. Just always remember to be flexible in life and in business. Remember the five habits of successful selling and in now time you will start to get the results you are looking for.