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Climate Change: Real or Imagined? | Jeff C West

This one could cause some controversy!

For years I have been hearing the debate in the scientific and political communities in regard to whether climate change (global warming) is happening or not; and if it is, are we humans actually causing the problem – if it exists?

I spent the afternoon yesterday contemplating life’s mysteries such as these, as I was wrapping the pipes at my house in Houston, Texas in preparation for the low to mid-twenty degree temperatures that will be occurring today and tomorrow (a very RARE occurrence).  I then watched the Green Bay Packers and the San Francisco Forty-Niners play a football game in a record low temperature for an NFL playoff game.  And then the NY Post and Fox News reported that the Russian Ship, Akademik Shokalskiy actually got stuck in the ice in Antarctica while it was there to document global warming.  (That sounds like it should be the punch line of a joke to me.)

Needless to say, I began to have my doubts as to the validity of the argument – regardless of who is right or wrong.

Allow me to explain.  Based on the actual data, I will tell you that I have absolutely no idea if the rise in the average global temperature is a trend or an anomaly.

If you give me the activity report on any sales person – showing the number of prospecting calls, appointments set, presentations made, follow up calls and actual sales results; I can give you some solid analysis of where their strengths and weaknesses are and what they should do to improve their performance.  But there is a caveat.  The data must cover a long enough period of time.  For example, if I have the data for a minimum of one quarter – but preferably over a 6 months or longer period of time I can give some valid feedback.  However, if that data only covers a day, week or month – then my analysis would most likely lack accuracy.  Without enough data, it is impossible to determine whether their performance was indicative of the sales person’s work habits or skill set; or if it is just an anomaly – whether a good anomaly or a bad one.

Again, I am certainly not claiming to be a scientist.  But the amount of time we have been tracking weather and recording the data – as compared to the actual time the earth has had weather – would be a very small amount of time.  So either side saying that they are certain that we are, or are not, having man made climate change based on the available data – strikes me as the equivalent of me looking at one hour of sales data in a thirty-year career and telling someone what they need to do to improve their performance.

I find the actual fact of climate change is less interesting than the perception of those involved in the debate – for both sides. It is their perception that dictates their behavior. It is their perception that determines their reality.

A sales person’s perception of their reality will determine their behavior in exactly the same way.

If a sales person thinks the economy is bad, they will behave in such a way that their sales results will prove them right. They will find a sales slump.

You can take another sales person, even in the same geographic and economic area, who thinks the economy is a non-issue and they will behave in such a way that their sales results will prove them right as well.  They will achieve their goals.

Earl Nightingale, in The Strangest Secret, said “We become what we think about.” This is an amazing truth to me. Now, I know there are exceptions out there – otherwise teenage boys would become teenage girls before they got old enough to vote.  But make no mistake, the way we perceive our circumstances – what we think about – directs our behaviors and has a huge impact on the outcome of our efforts.

Keep focused on great things for you and your family this year. Keep your mind focused on what you want to happen – and nothing else. Then go out and do the work that will bring your thoughts to fruition.

It is 28 degrees in Houston Texas this morning! That’s cold for us!  That damn global warming!

Questions:

What do you expect in your sales results this year?

What skill sets do you need to develop in order to overcome obstacles that cause your fellow sales people to stumble?

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