Communication SkillsSelling Skills

What top performers know…

Call me a slow learner. My client told me his sales team was extraordinarily talented except for a few people who complain a lot, sell a little and seem to have an excuse for everything.

He was right. They had an excuse for everything … and they actually believed themselves! Oh, and they thought we were buying it too. They blamed the economy, their territory, the competition (because comp set had better [fill in the blank here] prices, products, services, location, value) and even their lives (as in, I have a family, baby, puppy, too, you know).

They sat at the table closest to the back so they could remove themselves from as much interaction and learning as possible. They didn’t know that I always talk about the elephant in the room. And they were it. (The DOS needed a talking to, too…. in private, we worked on setting expectations and communicating accountability.)

What does this have to do with you? Are you a back sitter, an excuse giver, a less than great performer? Wait, that’s the wrong question. Better to ask yourself: What do I want to be?

If you want to do your best work instead of pretending you are, find peeps who are able to do the stuff you can’t.

Zero in on what they’re doing right. You don’t need to reinvent the wheel. They’ve somehow figured out how to get the result they want; they’ve solved the economy, territory, competition problems already. As Dan and Chip Heath say in their book, Switch, How to Change Things When Change is Hard, it’s not about willpower, because willpower is weak. It’s about changing your environment so you don’t need to rely on willpower.

My mother always told me I’d be known by the friends I keep. Who knew her advice would be more important after high school? At your next meeting, sit with the top performers because the back of the room doesn’t suit you.

Tell me what you’re doing to improve your outlook and your results.

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