#1 – Optimism
#2 – Flexibility
#3 – Courtesy
Constants are powerful. They are like Bedrocks to a foundation; A rock solid, reliable base on which to build. Constants are common denominators. All even numbers have 2 as a constant. It will go evenly into all of them. Even-so, constant strengths in our lives are the best foundations, for us to build our lives and careers on. They are the qualities that can go evenly into all our situations. They are power bases that we can count on, in the changes and difficulties of a sales career.
In my public speaking and sales training background; I have built on some constant, reliable strengths that have always served me well. They are the philosophies of #1 – Make Today Great; #2 – Rigid Flexibility and #3- Be good to others. or Optimism, Flexibility and Courtesy.
This BEAM is to help you assess the presence or absence of these qualities in your own career. And to help you strengthen your #sales game, by utilizing these precepts of power.
#1 – Be optimistic. Make today Great!
Many times people want to gloss over that which is obvious. To not spend any time on basic skills and qualities because their need is so plain. Optimism is one of these.
Vince Lombardi created championship football teams by making them master the fundamentals. The problem with not focusing on a fundamental; is that this failure can cause it not to be a fundamental, part of your game.
It is a matter of history that one day the Packers suffered a humiliating defeat by a team that never should have beaten them. Vince Lombardi called a meeting for the next morning. With apprehension the players gathered in the clubhouse. They expected to be berated and have their careers taken apart. Yet, when the coach appeared, and the room fell silent; Lombardi did something they did not expect. He picked up a football and held it up before the room full of professional players. Then he said the following famous words: “Gentlemen, this is a football.”
He helped these men master what had caused their failure. What was this missing ingredient? A lack of fundamentals. He made them work again, on blocking, tackling and all the basic football skills that they all took for granted. Basic skills that they needed to focus on again, to win the game.
Optimism is like this. Sure people will tell you they are positive. But I have found few, (very few) sales representatives that did not need coaching in this area. Sometimes people in my organization laugh because of the enthusiasm and power, with which I answer the phone. From this very first contact with the customer, I am working on being upbeat and positive. I am regularly accused of being “outrageously positive.”
Optimism is as fundamental to sales, as blocking and tackling is to football. Without it, you are licked before you start. Make Today Great has been a philosophy I have worked on my whole life. And I still work on it today. Having a zealous, enthusiastic, up-beat attitude will help you in every area of your performance. Far from being a put on. It can become a life-style that sets you apart from the rest of the ho-hum workplace.
#2 – Rigid Flexibility – Roll with the punches.
I teach Shotokan karate. And Shotokan is hard for people of an American mindset to learn. We like instant gratification. Quick lessons. Quick Fix solutions. And there are none in Shotokan.
In Shotokan, instead of working on hundreds of techniques dozens of times. We work on a few techniques, hundreds and hundreds of times. In so doing, muscle memory is learned and powerful nuances of movement and roots of power are discovered; that can not be learned in a more shallow examination.
One of these bedrock principles that I relentlessly cause my students to focus on is Stance. No stance; No Shotokan. Stance finds the power of the ground and generates it into punches and kicks. Stance finds the strength to have a position of posture, that is hard to move or shake. Stance is a springboard for everything else. A good stance leads to dynamism in all of the techniques. On and on I could go….
Flexibility is to sales, what stance is to Shotokan. It is absolutely imperative. Without it, every posture is weak and vulnerable. You should be absolutely RIGID in only ONE thing. Rigid In Flexibility.
To succeed in the sales game you must expect the unexpected. Or if you do not expect it; at least not be rattled by it. Changes will happen. Game-plans will be revised. The market-place will evolve or maybe even devolve. To be an expert in the sales dimension. You must be like a good boxer in the ring. Roll with the punches. Don’t get so stiff and rigid that you can not change, when demands change.
Your success most likely will depend on it. Remember: Don’t sweat the small stuff. And its all small stuff. The song was “Don’t worry, be happy.” And while this is a little over-simplistic; the point is a good one. Make up your mind that change is normal and its OK, when it happens. Be flexible.
#3 – Be Courteous. Be good to others.
I am a Quaker. So when my wife and I got married; in true Quaker style we said our vows directly to each other. They were plain and simple. We pledged to Be Good to Each Other. And this has been quite a task in and of itself, with 6 children in the picture. I tell people. I had 2. She had 4. And together, we had a mess. … LOL but really.
The Golden Rule really is valid in all of life but especially in #sales. The Golden Rule is really golden. If you become an expert at being good to your employer, being good to your associates and being good to your customers; you will glow in your career.
It is amazing how being a person of character and courtesy will bless your life and your sales career. I know. I know. Everyone is worried about being used. But with a little common sense and foresight, principles of kindness can actually make you less vulnerable, not more. Others will often guard you back, when you are a person of honesty, truth and caring nature. And besides, the workplace is more fun, when you have fun.
If you are a sour pickle; you are not likely to sell much. Qualities of an outgoing disposition, sunny outlook and chivalrous behavior will set you head and shoulders ahead of the selfish. The self-centered egotist usually winds up doing him or herself in and losing opportunities, because of a small mind and small heart.
Incorporate the principles of courtesy into your sales career. You will find that your employers trust you, your work-mates respect you and your customers buy from you MORE; when you are this kind of person.
So why not this week, look for ways to Make Today Great! Practice Rigid Flexibility and Be Good to Others. Fundamentals, that’s true. But Fundamental’s worth Review!
There was no sunshine outside,
So I created some with my smile.
All were stuck fighting,
So I stepped aside, laughing.
Everybody struggled for the prize,
So I shined my light, so they could see it.
tgc – me
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