The Sales Advantage

By Steve VerBurg

The Sales Advantage

Sales: Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid

Last week, I was coaching a world-champion fighter on presentation techniques. As a fighter, he knew how to prepare for every fight and walked into the ring with the mental attitude that he would be victorious. However, he said that he turned down multiple speaking opportunities because he did not have an understanding of how to prepare his presentations in the same way. This is also a challenge for a lot of people in sales. They are not doing sales activities because they don’t know how to prepare for success in those other activities. If you have fallen into this trap: “Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid!”

The fact that you don’t like certain activities is different from being afraid of doing things you don’t feel knowledgeable about. As a commission sales representative, you are dependent on creating a sustainable pipeline. If you are avoiding sales activities such as cold calling, presentations or handling objections with confidence because you don’t know the proper way to prepare then you should be afraid. Five or six years ago the economy allowed sales people to become comfortable and avoid activities that they had not perfected. In today’s marketplace, there is no room for timid sales people who won’t do the necessary tasks required to make the sale. To quote Zig Ziglar, “Timid salespeople have skinny kids.” In other words, you are not going to make a living to support your family unless you do what is necessary.

In order to overcome the anxiety that comes with doing sales activities you are not comfortable with you have to tell yourself: “I can and will do it.” Attitude is the biggest obstacle to success next to knowledge. Once you have the right attitude you can seek knowledge on how to become better at those sales activities. This knowledge can come from mentors, books, seminars, sales coaches, etc. Make sure to practice with your mentor or coach to develop the right habits. This practice breads confidence and eliminates fear.

Applied knowledge combined with attitude is an unstoppable force. Once these things are in alignment, you will be able to knock out your quota and succeed at all aspects of sales. And then there is no reason to be afraid.

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