Angels wing it! But sales people need to prepare!
I remember the first time I heard that bit of wisdom. I was young, brash and a little bit over confident in my abilities to walk into any situation and make it work out to my desired conclusion. I was good with people and I was not afraid of hard work. And for the most part, I was achieving sales results that kept my employer happy with my performance.
I was attending a seminar and I heard Zig Ziglar deliver that quote as he knelt down on one knee. With that big smile and slow southern drawl, he had everyone in the auditorium in the palm of his hands. And when he said it, he was looking directly at me.
His point was simple. If you are struggling now, you will overcome those struggles with proper goal setting, planning and execution. And if you are experiencing success now, you will improve your sales performance with proper goal setting, planning and execution.
Albert Einstein is credited with saying, “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” We have all heard those words and how it may apply to sales techniques or training programs. But most sales people, sales leaders and small business owners tend to forget that this same definition of insanity applies to their goal setting as well. So think differently about your goals for 2014.
Top Goal Setting Mistakes:
- Accepting a target or quota given to you by your sales manager as your goal for 2014 is a HUGE mistake. Your goals should always exceed any target given to you by your company – but other than that, their target for you should be totally irrelevant. Your goals should be based on your wants and desires for your family. Surely you want more for your family than anyone else, right? So how can the goals of your company or your sales manager be high enough for you?
- If you are a sales leader, waiting until you know the sum total of the goals set by those people on your team before you set your own goals is another HUGE mistake. You should spend time teaching your team how to set their goals, and then inspire them to exceed them. If you assign quotas or targets to your team, make sure that sum total of those targets exceed your personal goals.
- Failing to share your goals with other stakeholders is a mistake. You should share your goals with your sales manager – and get their coaching on how to achieve your targets. If you are a sales leader, you should share your goals with your sales team. If you have built the right chemistry and gotten the right buy-in, your goal will become their goal – and they will have an emotional attachment in achieving it.
- Setting sales goals before setting personal goals is a mistake. You should take the time to set your family and personal goals first. Then calculate the sales target you need to hit in order to achieve what you want for your family.
Simple Goal Setting For 2014 – start at the end; then work your way back to the beginning:
- Make a list of at least ten things you want to accomplish for your family in 2014. If you are married, make this list with your spouse.
- Determine the sales commissions you must earn in order to accomplish your family top ten.
- Determine the number of sales you must close in order to earn your commissions.
- Determine the quantity of sales activities you must complete in order to close those sales. Start with the number of presentations; then the appointments; then the prospecting calls; and finally the leads identified. Also determine the new media and channels you need to add to your arsenal to bring in more business in 2014.
- Break the activities down into daily, weekly and monthly targets.
- Write all of the above on several index cards to insure that you see and read these goals several times each day.
Final thought: find an accountability partner. You need someone who cares about you and your family that you can share your goals and your activity plan with. Give that person permission to help you hold yourself accountable for doing the activities.
Who is your current accountability partner on achieving your goals?
What new media and business channels will be an important new source of business for you in 2014?