Sales Lesson #25: Mistakes Are Good Things. Make That GREAT Things.
Bob Oros is another sales trainer and coach I know and admire.
This reminder came via this morning’s email.
It definitely is worth a read.
Here’s a real problem — we don’t get recognition for our failures, only our success. At the sales meetings the recognition always goes to one with the highest sales volume. This recognition is, of course, their just reward.
However, how does it make everyone else feel?
We reward success to the point that if you are not in the top ten percent you feel insignificant or unimportant. You work just as hard, make just as many sales calls and presentations, ask for the order, yet things just don’t seem to come together. And then, at every sales meeting, your feeling of having only mediocre sales ability is reinforced.
We think we are reinforcing success, and we are for those few who exceeded their sales objective this month, yet we are actually reinforcing failure in everyone else. If you have had these feelings it doesn’t mean the system is at fault, it means our attitude towards failure is at fault.
Experiences that are continually unsuccessful can discourage us and decrease our desire for success. What we need is something on a personal level that will keep us feeling successful. That something is how we define mistakes and failures. There is only one way reach that single goal every sales person has; exceed their sales objective. That way is to go through the ” tunnel” of painful experience. Along the wall of this tunnel are the inscriptions of those who went before you and gave up. You know what they are: “This is not worth it”; “There must be a better way to make a living”; “I’m going back to school and get a real job”; “All the good territories are already taken”; “The competition is ruthless”; “I’m going to try selling a different line”; “They expect too much”; “How can they expect to sell anything at these prices”; etc.
The light at the end of the tunnel went out for these people who were not “cut out to be in sales”. They saw only the glamour of being independent with opportunity to earn “easy” money. They didn’t realize that they had to “cut themselves out” to succeed in this business. This tunnel is designed as a filter, it weeds out those who are not willing to pay the price.
There is only one way through the tunnel and that is to keep going. You can always go on for one more day. Stick it out for one more week. Hang in there one more month. And then, all of a sudden, just when you are ready to give up, everything will come together. You will be the one getting the recognition. Then everyone will be telling you how lucky you are. That you got all the breaks, had the best territory and the easiest customers to work with. You and I will know better.