Strength in adversity

Reading one of the best books to date… ‘The 5am Club’ by Robin Sharma and couldn’t resist sharing this quote. Absolutely recommend you buy, read and apply this phenomenal gift

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Step 3 to Success in Sales

You’ve got your ideal getaway on your vision board, you know where you want to get to and what you will be doing, seeing and experiencing that makes this the event of all events; that makes this so incredible that the effort it took to make it a reality is negligible in comparison

If you’ve been following the journey of Steps to Success in Sales you will now have worked through (if not here they are)

Step 1 Have inspiring aspirations

Step 2 Figure out what success looks like

You are now at the part in your journey where you are ready to apply Step 3 Create your plan

A vision without action is just a dream, action without a plan is a painful and unnecessary journey

In this phase you take the elements of success (step 2) and break them down into manageable chunks. This has two advantages

  1. It makes it more realistic and far more motivational to follow

Think about it – If I told you that in order to achieve your dream aspiration in twelve months from now,  that you would need £12,000 there is a 95% chance (there are the 5% that think differently) that you would look at the sum and think “I don’t have that! I’ve never seen that kind of money and have definitely never earned that kind of money! I can’t do that!” 

Now imagine we take that sum and break it down over 12 months = £ 1,200.00 per month

Still not convinced?

Lets break it down even further to a weekly goal (4 weeks) = £300 per week

And if still not convinced, down to a daily goal (based on 20 working days) = £60 per day

How do you feel about the ability to create £60 per day? If you’re like me when I started sales even this seemed too much so I took it one step further and broke it down to hours (12 hour working day – start of my sales career) = £5.00 p/hour

“You mean all I have to do is focus on generating £5.00 every hour? That’s easy how do I get started?!”

I took this principle from one of my most valued mentors, John Maxwell, when he shared a story regarding the need to cut down a massive Oak Tree that had died in the back yard with a small hand axe. To summarise – when you look at the tree and you look at the tool you have you start off by thinking “its going to take forever, I just can’t do this!” but if through research you knew that with this axe, it would take on average 1200 strokes to cut clean through and that this equated to 5 chops a day for the next 12 months (which is the time you have given yourself to accomplish this task) then it would seem very achievable and are therefore willing to take action

2. It enables you to create the plan

A Plan

A detailed outline of actions, time frames, tools, and resources following a structured path resulting in the achievement of a pre-determined goal

When you start creating your plan remember to design it following the SMART framework

S – Specific

Each aspect of the plan must be clearly and expressly detailed

Not S – I will make sales calls

Definitely S

“Every day starting at 8am, I will call my pre-identified list of prospects until I have managed to have five (5) quality conversations. A quality conversation at this point means a) speaking to the decision maker b) being able to do my introduction c) the person agreeing to speak with me. I will do this every day Monday to Friday till I have achieved success of a quality conversation as laid out above, at which point I will adapt my measure of a quality conversation to the next level”

“My pre-qualified call list will have been generated the day before through the search process I have decided on, and will at all times contain a minimum of 50 names (this is made up of people I did not manage to get hold of, people who said to call back, references and referrals I have picked up along the way) and will contain their name, surname, job title, mobile number and/or office number and one piece of interesting information I may use to start my conversation with”

Note – there is a lot more that can go into this however I feel you have the gist

How do you know its specific enough?

Is it measurable? Do you have numbers – factual, tangible data which you can use to measure against?

Is it achievable? At the outset this may not always be easy to answer until we have given it a go. That being said, there are very few activities we under take now a days which somebody else has not already done and an easy way to ascertain this is to ask somebody that is succeeding in what you do; somebody who is a few months ahead of you, what there experience is and whether they see this as achievable. Important Tip! You want to ensure you are set up for success and therefore I recommend starting with an easy to achieve plan which gives you confidence and which allows you to then build up from. If you are not achieving, you will quickly become disheartened.

Is it relevant and realistic? Do the activities you have planned to take a) have purpose b) contribute to the realisation of your goals

Is it timed? Have you set time lines and dates to every activity and goal?

 

Those are the fundamentals of Step 3 Sales to Success. In step 4 we will look at further things you would want to be aware of in order to make step 3 as accurate as possible

 

Have a truly prosperous day

Getting your people to give their best

I was having a conversation with Frankie, an ambitious business owner who had called me in as they were struggling to achieve the growth they had envisioned for their business. Eventually the conversation came around to the team and Frankie shared the following

“I’m at my wits end, these individuals just don’t do what they should be doing; aren’t performing the way the should and ought to be performing, and I don’t know what to do about it [i.o.w I’m starting to lose faith in them]”

I get this, we want the people who we have invested out trust in to deliver on our expectations, and this not happening is disappointing and not something a leaders wants to be dealing with over and above all the other day to day challenges leadership brings.

My mission is to equip, enable and empower leaders to achieve potential in themselves and others and these conversations really get to my heart. Naturally I’ve taken to studying the situations and below I want to share with you solutions which if applied will greatly change these situations for the good

Solutions

Before I go to solutions let me start by clarifying that there are cases where the reason for this is simple –

“the person/individuals are not right for the role they were hired for. They don’t have the required ability/mental attitude/desire (resilience/mindset) and nothing you do, no matter how much you invest – and believe me you end up investing more of yourself than is worth – the individual/s will never shine in that role”

Remind me to share with you a few simple hacks that have helped minimise the chance of falling foul of these types of situations

With that out of the way, lets look at how to get people to give their best

1. Make sure they know why!

If an individual doesn’t know ‘why they are doing what they are doing’,they will naturally be less invested. Always work from the premise that people operate from one subconscious mindset “What’s in it for me”

  • Share you vision and passion and how they fit into this (people need to feel they are a part of the bigger picture)
  • Understand (and more importantly help them understand) their vision and passion
  • Help them clarify their aspirations and rewards (WIFM’s)

2.  Make sure they know what is expected of them

Point one is seldom done. Point two is done often – Badly! You have standards and expectations about what a successful delivery and outcome looks like to you.

Brady was talking to me about such a situation. An experienced and highly capable employee who had achieved immense success in their career to date, Brady had come to me exasperated

“I just don’t know what to do anymore. My boss is never happy with what I’ve achieved. I find myself trying harder, pushing more, working longer but it’s still never good enough. It’s breaking me down and I don’t know how much longer I can go on like this”

This is a truly soul destroying situation to be in, I know because I have experienced this . I’ve also experienced the reverse and have thrived as a result.

The problem – in Brady’s case and reciprocally in mine and most others who have experienced the same frustrations is that there had been poor communication around expectations

  • Communicate exactly what you want, how you want it done, what success ‘looks like’. Expecting the other individual to ‘know’ what this looks like without having communicated it clearly and succinctly is setting them up to fail
  • Communicate every expectation using the SMART framework
  • Communicate the benefits of success. People want to know what the reward’s are
  • Communicate what the potential of none achievement could be
  • Keep regularly reveiwing your standards and expectations. Are they really critical are you focusing on how its done more than on the critical outcome?

As I wrote the above I had a picture in my mind of some of you sitting reading this going “Really?!” which brought a smile to my face. I get your response – there are some personalities, the just get it done types, which are sitting there thinking

“I don’t need this depth of information!”, “spending the time communicating to this level of detail is wasting time and detracting from getting the important stuff done!”

Like I said: “I get it, I’ve heard it. Heck, I’ve even said it and thought it.” Now stop for a moment and take a moment to reflect back on all the long tiresome repetitive conversations you have had with employees, the amount of time you have ‘needed’ to take the job back and do it yourself,; the amount of time you have wasted.

Would a short detailed conversation not have saved you all this pain and frustration? Apart from having hired the wrong person (remind me to share with you a few hacks to minimise this from happening) I believe YES – I’ve not only seen it but experienced it myself

3. Make sure they have the knowledge and skills to deliver

Train and develop them.

  • Do they know what they need to know (do they have the necessary knowledge
  • Do they understand the knowledge. Can they explain how what they know works, the impact it has, can they identify how something has been achieved by identifying what was or was not done
  • Can they do it? Are they able to demonstrate/action the behaviours, techniques necessary?
  • Are they doing it?
  • Tell them, show them, have them show you, have them do it

4. Give regular, timely, appropriate feedback

  • Praise 5 x more than you criticism
  • Praise the actions, behaviours that you wish to see become ingrained
  • Focus on the action/behaviour, not the person or character
  • Follow up as agreed

5. Develop people to be accountable to themselves and the person they have made the commitment to.

Do not, under any circumstances allow the agreed standards to go by the way side. This doesn’t mean that you hammer the person the first time they miss an expectation – things happen, there are a multitude of reasons which contribute to success. The essential is to ensure the conversation is held and development is agreed

 

There you have it! Five steps to ensure you have set your team up for success, ensuring they are positioned to give their best

 

Have a brilliant week

Steps to success in sales

In this post we look at Step 2 of Success in Sales – Figure out what success looks like

A quick recap on Step 1. Have inspiring aspirations

This is where you started your journey to success in sales, the step which in my opinion is the most important part: Your W.I.F.M (what’s in it for me).

At the heart of it, everything we do is driven by our W.I.F.M (we all are very different and our WIFM’s will differ even more so) and our W.I.F.M is the anchor that helps sustain the work ethic, discipline and resilience required to achieve success in sales.

With your aspirations in place, you are now in a position to create Step 2

How do I go about what success looks like?

Start by defining what success means to you. Here are two ways I look at it

a. Success is achievement of the goal, objectives and aspirations I have put in place

b. Success is the doing not the achieving

What is your definition of success?

Reason for defining success is that this starts to  convert aspirational W.I.F.M’s them into tangible facts of specific value.

Example

One of my W.I.F.M’s aspiration is to enjoy three yearly 7-14 day holidays at various destinations around the world. In this example I would identify an exact vacation (where, what (accommodation, travel, entertainment, etc), how etc), have pictures of it (vision board) and would have a date when I planned to leave for this holiday.

In step 2 I take this vision and I convert it into a value

Example

The total experience would cost £3000.00 and because I plan to leave for this holiday on the 7 March 2020 I would have 16 months in which to create the funds necessary to achieve this motivational aspiration

With this information in my line of site I am now ready to move to Step 3.