Being in sales or sales leadership is often like being the head coach of a football team.
When everything is going great and you and your team are winning, you are the hero. When everything is not going so well, you are the zero. Either way, you are responsible for your results.
As a sales professional, we don’t shy away from that responsibility – we revel in it. We would rather accept the risk for the reward. The thoughts of being in a job with an income cap and punching someone’s version of a time clock can be a bit disheartening.
“Sales people are also responsible for the success of their company and the job of every employee there. “
If the sales team cannot bring in enough sales for the company to pay their expenses (including salaries) – the company is destined to fail. When that happens, everyone loses their jobs.
With the responsibility of sales comes great income; and that is part of the allure of the career.
If you are responsible now – you will find it easier to be responsible as your career progresses and your income grows.
So, what are we responsible for?
Manage Your Own Clock:
If someone has to tell you when it is time to go to work, sales may not be your best career choice. Great sales people know that they must work a little harder than the rest of the crowd. They show up a little early. They work a little late. They are prospecting everywhere they go – not in a rude or awkward kind of way. Instead, they are always asking questions so that they can learn about people. They also are always trying to connect people for the benefit of others. They know if they help enough other people get what they want, they will get what they want as well.
Manage Your Own Attitude:
Sales people encounter rejection. Rejection tends to ignite our negative emotions. Negative emotions can kill a sales career faster than Congress can spend a dollar. You have to protect your attitude by feeding your positive emotions and then linking them to your sales activities. What motivates you? What makes you feel enthusiastic? What makes you want to be more of a team player in such and individual sport? Find the things outside of yourself – that strike a chord deep within you. External motivation is great – but temporary.
“Self-sustaining motivation happens when you connect your career to your heart.”
Manage Your Own Activities:
Just before walking out the door at the end of your work day, make a list of everything you must do on the next day. Make sure that your list includes all of the activities that are a part of your sales process. Set aside time for prospecting, presenting, following up and selling. Make your plan and then work your plan like a machine. Make sure that your plan includes time for personal development.
Great sales people truly are responsible. So go be the hero in your world!
QUESTION: How well are you handling the responsibility of your career?