Tag: quota

Everyone Sells But Few Can Truly Sell

Everyone Sells But Few Can Truly Sell

We have all heard the line:

Everyone sells.

We have heard it over and over. It is typically combined with some cute anecdote about a child convinces his or her mother for an ice cream cone or a new toy or to stay up and watch a show.

Yes, we all have to convince another person to make a decision in our favor (the essence of sales) but that doesn’t mean that we do it well. Also, the story of the child never includes the number of times that Mom doesn’t buy the ice cream cone or the new toy.

I frequently talk about the failure rate of salespeople. I do not know of a single profession that fails as often as sales.

  • Pilots don’t fail as often (most planes take off and land just fine).
  • Accountants don’t fail as often.
  • Bakers don’t fail as often (most cakes and cookies taste great).
  • Taxicab drivers do not fail as often (most make sure their passenger arrives safely).

In fact, aside from some really tough stats for professional sports (where the truly best-of-the-best play), I cannot think of any other profession where failure is so endemic.

The sales profession is challenging. You need to work hard at it to succeed. You need to learn from the best. You need to improve your skills continuously. If you think you can sell since you are a hit at parties and have a lot of friends, you may soon find that you are a failure as a salesperson. Blunt truth: because the sales profession is so hard, you have to focus on doing everything in sales very well, or you will be considered a failure.

This recent poll by Salesforce.com re-affirms this issue. Most salespeople in that year did not expect to make their quota. That doesn’t mean that they didn’t make some sales. That doesn’t mean that they didn’t cover their specific costs.

It does probably mean that they didn’t make as much money as they hoped to make. In almost every salesperson’s mind, that means they failed.

This is why I wrote my book, Eliminate Your Competition. It is the only book that I know of that is written by a salesperson (me) for other salespeople rather than a sales trainer that stopped selling years (decades?) ago. Granted, I have moved to a sales management role today, but I am still making sales calls every week. I am still driving revenue for my company using the same tools that I talk about in my book.

If you want to get better at sales, I suggest you read my book. You may purchase my book Eliminate Your Competition from your favorite book retailer. The ebook version is available at the most popular retailers such as Apple, Amazon, Barnes & Noble. The paperback version is also widely available at such retailers as Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Books A Million.

Success Should be Your Primary Business Goal

Success Should be Your Primary Business Goal

Every massively successful salesperson that I have ever met has one over-arching trait that is common among all of them. A successful person is goal oriented.

I recently had lunch with a salesperson that I respect a great deal. It was a lunch with several salespeople planning their joint marketing events for the balance of the year. A junior salesperson was asking one of the more senior salespeople for some advice on a deal. During the conversation, I overheard a piece of advice that all salespeople should adhere to:

“Always begin the year with the goal of making quota for that year. In fact, always begin the year assuming you are going to do significantly over your quota for the year.”

Being goal-oriented starts by assuming that you will be successful. Your company and its managers will surely give you challenging quota. It may even shock you that they want you to achieve that quota based on your account base and the company’s position in the marketplace. You may be able to negotiate this quota, but eventually, it will be written down, and it will be your final number.

Once your quota for the year is set, stop complaining about it. That part of the process is over. Now you must succeed.

The first part of any successful process is to set your goal that you will blow away your quota. You must convince yourself that YOU WILL BE SUCCESSFUL! You must set your sights on a number that is higher than your goal. You must plan your activities to achieve that goal.

Once you have established that goal, you need to write it down. Just like all goals, if you don’t write your goals, then you run the risk of not being successful.

As a salesperson, this particular goal is probably your most important professional goal. Revenue fixes all problems so if you make this goal then you will likely come very close to achieving all of your other goals. With this importance in mind, write it in big letters and put it in a prominent place. If you have a desk in an office, I suggest you place it on the wall directly above your monitor or laptop. This way whenever you are creating a proposal, it is right there reminding you. If your office is virtual or in your home, place it on your bathroom mirror or put it on the door to your closet.

Wherever you choose to place your goal reminder, make the goal direct and straightforward. Make sure it is where you will see it every single business day.

While you may arrive at your goal by multiplying your quota by an additional percentage, don’t write down the percentage. Write down the revenue amount that you need to achieve that goal. Don’t write down 125% on that paper above your monitor, write down $5,200,000.

By looking at what I just wrote in the above paragraph, it should be obvious another rule – write the revenue number out. Don’t write $5.2M – write $5,200,000.

Revenue fixes all problems with salespeople. Assume that you will be massively successful. Assume you will make quota. Never believe at the beginning of the year that you will lose.

Photo by sasint (Pixabay)