Category Archives: confidence

Try, Try Again

“If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.”

Like most of us, you’re probably familiar with this phrase… but if you’re wondering about the validity of the statement, or about the value of persistence, then read on.

Babe Ruth was the home run king with 714 home runs to his credit. What few people know is that during that same time period he also held the record for striking out at bat more than anyone else with 1,330 failures.

R.H. Macy failed seven times, before his store in New York caught on.

Author J.K. Rowling had her Harry Potter manuscript rejected time after time. Today, after successful books, movies, toys, clothing, etc., she is one of the world’s richest authors with a net worth of $1.0 billion dollars and 400 millions books published.

Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team. His coach justified the cut by pointing out that Michael had little or no potential.

Colonel Sanders of Kentucky Fried Chicken fame had a hard time selling his chicken at first. In fact, his famous secret chicken recipe was rejected 1,009 times before a restaurant accepted it.

Walt Disney was fired by a newspaper editor because, “he lacked imagination and had no good ideas.”

The Take-away?
So, what’s the point of these lesser-known examples of perseverence? I suppose it is to realize the absolute importance of persistence… the value of staying the course; of not giving up too soon.

In our previous newsletter we referenced data indicating that, on average, it takes five-to-twelve contacts to make a sale; yet 80% of sales people make three-or-fewer attempts and then give up. Thus, the vast majority of opportunities are siezed by just 20% of the sellers.

The persistent ones.

Evolution?
Let’s also think about the buyers and how they may have evolved. Based on the statistics above, most sellers make one or two attempts to reach a potential buyer, and then they move on (give up!).

So, has the potential buyer “evolved” to somehow realize that by simply ignoring the first couple of queries from a seller, there is an eighty-percent chance that seller will simply go away?

Hmmm… food for thought?

If you’d like a few more surprising examples of the importance of persistence, consult this list of 50 well known successful people who didn’t start off quite so well.

The Winner?

cards_on_the_table_400_clr_14651“Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal. Nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.” W.W. Ziege

Selling is a people business. People buy from people, and most often, from people that they like. But what makes one sales rep more likable than the next? Surely all, or at least most sellers try to be likable!

Attitude makes the difference.

A positive attitude is not only easily recognizable, but it’s catchy. Sellers who possess truly positive attitudes honestly expect the best from customers and prospects, and they offer their personal best as well. They tend to react to things in an upbeat way and, more importantly, tend to bring about positive return reactions.

Every sales person and every sales manager should recognize the importance of developing and maintaining such an attitude within themselves and within their organizations.

A final testimonial to this discipline is a poem, author unknown, entitled The Winner. The final verse:

Life’s battles don’t always go
to the stronger or faster man;
but sooner or later the man who wins
is the fellow who thinks he can.

Confidence Can Be Very Catchy… Or Not!

confidenceConfidence is a big factor in sales, sales management and, for that matter, any form of business or institutional leadership. We all must believe in ourselves, in our organization, and that the job can be done.

Sales professionals must believe in the products and services they sell, and also that organizational leadership will support what they’re selling.

Sales managers and leaders must believe in the same things, and also in their team’s ability to do the job.

These beliefs are contagious.

But so too is the “lack of belief!”

Therefore, whether we are sales managers, team supervisors, group leaders, department heads or business owners, we should carefully question our dis-beliefs, because if we doubt our team’s ability to do the job; if we have second-thoughts about their dedication or loyalty to the cause; if we second-guess each move they make; if we have no faith in them, then it will show.

Even worse, it will show in their performance because they will sense the doubt and become paralyzed by the fear of ridicule or worse; and it will filter-through to their families and friends, to our clients and prospects, and, ultimately, to the marketplace.

Read the full article…

Step Outside-the-Box for Personal Growth & Achievement

boxSales professionals, sales managers, and business owners all share the need to maintain consistent personal development.

Many speak of stepping outside of one’s “comfort zone” as being a requirement for growth and skill development.

But as we all know, most of us do not readily embrace change, even when we are well-aware of the potential gain!

In a recent PULSE article,  Dr. Travis Bradberry, coauthor of Emotional Intelligence 2.0 and President at TalentSmartexplains that the very act of stepping outside of our comfort zone is critical to our success and well-being.

“Our brains are wired such that it’s difficult to take action until we feel at least some stress and discomfort,” Bradberry writes. “In fact, performance peaks when we’re well out of our comfort zone.”

Maybe, as Bradberry suggests, it might be easier for us to step outside-of-the-box if we took smaller steps?

Here are some of the “little steps” he lists — which qualify as examples of not only as stepping out of our comfort zone, but also as potential catalysts leading to greater levels of personal growth and success:

  • Get up earlier
  • Meditate
  • Focus on and achieve one “impossible” goal
  • Volunteer
  • Talk to someone you don’t know
  • Bite your tongue!

“Staying in our comfort zone means stagnation,” Bradberry says. “Just as an oyster only makes a pearl when it’s irritated by a grain of sand, no one has ever accomplished anything remarkable when comfortable.”

 

Do You Believe… in You?

possibleIn an earlier post we referenced Frank Edwin “Tug” McGraw Jr., who was a Major League Baseball relief pitcher and the father of country music singer Tim McGraw. As noted in that post, he is likely best remembered for two things… recording the final out, via a strikeout, in the 1980 World Series, bringing the Philadelphia Phillies their first world championship… and his pithy quote…,

“You Gotta Believe!”

Have you ever wondered about the impact of belief, or the value of believing not only in what we do, but also in our own ability to do it?

Much has been written about these concepts, including well-known examples such as “The Power of Positive Thinking,” by Dr. Norman Vincent Peale, and Rhonda Byrne’s “The Secret.”

Here are a few more, possibly less-famous, perspectives on how our belief or conviction might enable us to achieve greater levels of success or fulfillment:

In his book, “The Power of Self-Confidence,” Brian Tracy concludes that “the foundation quality of success in every walk of life is self-confidence.”

Tracy also shares examples and case studies, and suggests, “If you had unlimited self-confidence, you would be more powerful, popular and persuasive… you would be admired, respected and sought after… recognition and responsibilities would flow to you because of people’s belief in your ability to do what it took to get the job done.”

In his article “The Greatest Principle of Human Persuasion,” author and sales expert G. Harold McLeod identifies a person’s conviction as the most persuasive component of communication. “People are persuaded more by the depth of your conviction than by the height of your logic,” he says. “…more by your own enthusiasm than any proof you can offer. Put another way, people are converted not to your way of thinking; they are persuaded more by your way of feeling, your way of believing.”

In his book “The Art of the Solo Performer,” author and musician Steve Rapson explains that at one time or another even the most seasoned artists — whether they be musicians, actors, singers or speakers — are affected by nervousness or stage-fright, and that the most effective way of overcoming the affliction involves a combination of “preparation and conviction.”

These beliefs are not only important, but also contagious!

Read the full article…