The best sales call you make, could be the one that you didn’t make.
Let me explain. I was at a seminar recently hearing self-proclaimed experts in sales sharing their behaviors and techniques on how to be successful. Further, there were speeches on what one has to do; making cold calls, pre-call preparation, following-up etc., in order to be successful which is all good and well. What was missing though was a discussion on the most important part of any sale, or, for that matter, all other events in life, and that is your attitude.
You may possess all the behaviours and techniques to make you successful, but if you do not have the proper attitude, how good is all that knowledge? If you feel as if you will be defeated before you even start, how successful is that call going to be? If you actually have a dislike or disdain for the client, do you not think that shows through? If you actually dislike what you are doing, just how motivated are you? Does that lack of motivation show through in your body language, tonality, words and general presentation? If you think no, and that you can mask it, think again. This can even be picked up on the phone. Don’t think so? Has this ever happened, you call someone and very early in the conversation you get, ‘What’s wrong?’ or words to that effect?
If we examine the definition for attitude; a settled way of thinking or feeling about someone or something typically one that is reflected in a person’s behavior, it clearly states that your attitude affects your behaviour. Therefore, how can you do the right behaviour without the proper attitude? If we further believe that behaviours actually drive success, then how can you succeed if your behavior is being affected by your attitude?
Attitude is not something that can be fixed in a seminar, or, even reading a paper, but you can start by making a few tweaks. A lot of “head trash” we carry around which affects the attitude can be manipulated. For instance, there is a very uncomfortable call or meeting you have to have and this is playing on your mind as to the scenario that it is going to happen and the ultimate outcome. Now you carry that all day long and have you ever noticed as the day goes along how more dire the scenario and outcome becomes to the point that you do not handle it. Solution; as it arises, do it right away. Here is what you will find in the great majority of cases; it is never as bad as you make it out to be. Result: your mind is now clear and your whole outlook for the day has just changed.
Another common scenario for all of us in the sales game is, you have just finished a meeting with a prospective client and nothing has gone right and you feel like there is nothing that is going to happen. Why not just own it and either apologize and ask the client, ‘Mr. Customer, I would simply like to apologize. You have caught me in one of my rare bad days and I feel as if I have wasted your time. I feel that there is absolutely no interest in us working together here and I take full blame for it.’ This is commonly referred to as “falling on your sword”. One of two things usually happen here: one, is that the client says ‘Not at all I would like to see you again when you feel that you are more able to present your concept.’ or secondly they can say, ‘You know, you are absolutely right, I can’t see a fit.’ Believe it or not, both are a win. The first is that they accept that we all have bad days and they see a possible fit and you have another chance. The second basically allows you to move onto another prospect and stop chasing an unproductive client. Regardless, your mind is cleared and you can move on without thinking of the last one. Therefore, instead of thinking about all that went or can go wrong, you can go in with a better attitude in the next call.
Look back at the title, sound familiar? Has anyone ever said that to you? Think back, was it because you had all of a sudden forgotten all your skills, behaviours, process and techniques that you have had all of your working professional life, or, more likely, that your attitude was just off at that particular instant?
Therefore, all that needs to be asked is; ‘If your head is not in the game, why would you want to play?’