Sales and marketing are two of the most important aspects of any business. No matter what type of company you have, it’s crucial to find ways to generate revenue and attract new customers. But all too often, businesses focus on the wrong things or develop bad habits when it comes to their sales and marketing efforts. There are three problems within sales and marketing that are so fundamental and basic in nature that many businesses completely overlook them, and if left unaddressed these problems can cause some serious harm. Here are three sales and marketing problems that will cost your business dearly if you don’t address them ASAP:
1) Missing the Fundamental Question
2) Less Selling | More Connecting
3) Not Seeing Beyond the Transaction
Problem 1: Missing the Fundamental Question
One of the most significant challenges facing new and established companies is the inability to answer what is arguably the most fundamental question: what is wrong with the world that you are business needs to exist? While this question seems painfully obvious, it is equally if not more painful hearing the various answers from people throughout the company. Responses that very are indicative of a company who does not uniformly know who they are or what they are about. One of the most valuable benefits of being able to have a solid answer to this question is that the answer provides direct insights into your customers world. The answer to this question speaks directly to the problems that they face and the challenges they experience that hold them back from where there could be. This is your company’s sweet spot because ideally you should be able to solve their challenges and accelerate then forward.
While it is critical that everyone throughout a company have complete clarity as to why the business that they support should exist, it is arguably most important that anyone occupying a role in sales or marketing should be most familiar with this answer. Sales and marketing are the primary contact point between your company and its customers and prospects, and if this group is out of sync On messaging as important as this then you have a serious problem on your hands. if you are out of sync here then how can you even begin to be successful in connecting with your customers and prospect base in any meaningful way?
The good news is that if your sales and marketing team that is currently effective in some way, that is an indicator they do have insight into this most fundamental question of why your company deserves to exist. However, taking the time to clarify this point will only serve as a means to connect with your customers and target audience In a far more effective manner that will invariably generate more revenue.
There is a common phrase that goes something like “nobody wants to be sold but everybody loves to buy”, and I would argue that we all have an innate understanding of what this means. However, how do you begin to explain the difference between somebody being sold versus somebody buying something? When you think of “being sold to” what does that conjure up in your mind? if you’re like me, you think of somebody who is a little too slick for their own good telling you exactly what you need, and why you need it, but they don’t ask you a single question. How can they tell you what you need when they don’t even know the first thing about you? Situations like this often tell us we are dealing with somebody who is worried about their interest more than ours. People like this are the ones who fuel all the popular stereotypes that we think of when it comes to the proverbial “used car salesperson”.
The most significant problem with these kinds of salespeople is that they are highly presumptive in their approach, and they almost exclusively spend their time talking about how great their product or service is. This is the kind of selling that is often found in rookie salespeople or poorly trained salespeople, and they do not get bound to full results overtime, and they do not set the stage at all for a long-term positive relationship between customer and vendor. If your salespeople are selling in this way, then you have an immediate and critical retraining initiative on your hands.
The best salespeople do not spend their time telling prospects how great they are. Rather, they show genuine interest in their prospects. They spend a great deal of time asking detailed questions and they listen intently to the response have the person opposite them. In listening to their prospects they gain deeply insightful knowledge as to the specific problems and the various dynamics of those issues faced by this particular prospect. With this knowledge a skilled salesperson can empathetically connect with their prospect, thus forming a true human to human connection period from there this skillful salesperson can directly match the problems their prospect faces with the solutions that they have to offer. Furthermore, they can craft an intricate and meaningful story of what an aspirational and achievable future looks like. Best of all the skillful salesperson can present numerous case studies that portray how others in similar circumstances were able to overcome their challenges and achieve a better state through your company’s products or services.
Problem 3: Not Seeing Beyond The Transaction
Salespeople push to close deals. That’s what they do. They sell products and or services. However, all too many salespeople, and companies for that matter, view the transaction as the culmination of all events serving as the end of the road. This is wrong. The transaction is not the end, but the beginning. If you have a sales team the views the sale as the end of the line, then you have a problem that you have to fix.
Salespeople have many tools at their disposal to help influence a deal to move forward ranging from video demos, ROI documents, case studies, etc. However, nothing is more potent for the salesperson then a thrilled customer willing to evangelize how great your company is to other prospects that are on the fence. Conversely, nothing is more damaging to a salesperson then a stable of unhappy customers.
Long term success for businesses largely stems from the quality of relationship they have with their customer base. Businesses that understand this invest the time effort and energy required to make these customers feel loved and heard on a regular basis. It is amazing how the bar yes set so low in many cases for customer expectation. poor customer service is more the rule then the exception these days. This sets the stage for your company to rise to the occasion and be something special in the mind, but more importantly the heart, of your customer. Simple things really matter in terms of preserving and expanding the relationship you have with your customer, but if you don’t think beyond the transaction then you will never grow these relationships, or the associated revenue that comes from a healthy and happy customer base in a meaningful way.
Bonus Point: companies that have been around awhile have had to weather a storm or two. Often it was revenue generated from there pool of current customers that sustained them through the potential crisis. if you do not have this type of customer base to lean on then your business will find itself in a very bad way the next time something of any significance shows up unexpectedly at your door. Will your business be able to weather the storm? Now is the time to take the action to ensure that answer is as close to a “yes” as you could possibly get as a guarantee.
It is a very noisy world that we live in and there are numerous books and programs that would teach you all the secrets to success. Unfortunately, most of these programs focus on the wrong things. Unfortunately, too many people are left wanting in terms of improving their craft. Unfortunately, too many prospects go underserved when it comes to the class of sales and marketing that they deserve.
Don’t let your company get caught up in the hollow hype. Look at your Sales and marketing fundamentals, which is aided by shining a light on the three problems listed above. if you can get your sales and marketing department’s right in the areas of fundamentally understanding why your company deserves to exist, selling less and connecting more, and seeing beyond the transactions, then you will find yourself better positioned than most to achieve significant, meaningful, and long lasting success. This is your opportunity to get better and vault well above and beyond your competition to achieve the growth that you know is out there. Go grab it.
Here at the upward spiral group, we know what we are about. We exist to help other companies and leaders maximize and realize their potential in order to better serve their customers, team members, and themselves. If you need a hand in achieving this next level of success let us know. We are here for you.
Negotiation. It is a skill that when mastered is nearly unrivaled in its capacity to increase the velocity of success in almost all facets of your life. However, achieving a professional caliber status at the craft of negotiation is not easily attained. Most people don’t feel the need to put the time, effort, or energy into improving their craft of negotiation because they see negotiation as a skill required more in the field of sales, CFOs, or attorneys. While those professions do require a regular utilization of this skill, negotiation is by no means relegated to the exclusive use of those job functions.
Do you ever want a raise? Negotiation
Do you ever want a promotion? Negotiation
Do you want to buy a house? Negotiation
Want to have a happy relationship with a significant other. Negotiation
Want to have kids that don’t grow up to be shit heads? Negotiation
I could go on, but I think you get the point.
Negotiation is for Everyone
At The Upward Spiral Group, we feel that negotiation is an absolutely necessary skill for everyone who wants to get the most out of life. However, negotiation is not an easy skill to learn. While negotiation is formulaic to a degree it is more of an artform than anything else. Like any other skill, negotiation is a craft that requires study, practice, and humility to get better.
Cody Strate recently sat down with Davin Marceau on The Upward Spiral Podcast to discuss Davin’s take on some of the common mistakes he sees at the negotiation table, and out came Ep. 47 – 5 Common Mistakes of Amateur Negotiators. Davin, an Army Ranger turned COO, is a master negotiator who has put in the work to become world-class at the craft of negotiation.
Before we go any further Davin would tell you is that if you really wanted to improve your negotiation prowess that you should pick up the wonderful book “Never Split the Difference” by Chris Voss. Voss’s book stands as one of the best and most practical guides to becoming a formidable negotiator, and Davin has had the opportunity to negotiate with the man himself (FYI he openly acknowledges he had his ass handed to him). Now that our acknowledgement of Chris Voss is out of the way let’s press on.
5 Common Mistakes of Amateur Negotiators
Davin has done hundreds of high stakes professional negotiations with customers, partners, vendors, and employees. When I asked him about mistakes he commonly sees that serve as the tale-tale signs he’s working opposite an amateur negotiator, he did not hesitate in coming up with his list.
Negotiation Vs. Bargaining | There’s a Difference
Lack of Preparation
A Lack of Self-Awareness
The Fallacy of Reciprocity
Negotiation Vs. Bargaining | There’s a Difference
Bargaining is different from negotiating. Bargaining is when you focus in on a singular item, such as price, and work exclusively around that one point. Conversely, negotiation is when you factor in numerous elements into the equation and the flow of the negotiation will dictate a rise or fall in the relative importance or value of these various factors. In other words, bargaining is rather myopic whereas negotiation is the simultaneous management of many elements.
Lack of Preparation
Anyone operating at a professional level puts in the time to gather information and practice numerous scenarios before entering into an event. Negotiation is no different. If you want to perform well, you should do the following in advance of your negotiation event…
gather as much info as you can
sort out the various contingencies that could occur
create plans for the different contingences
understand what you really want
understand what’s valuable to your counterparts
What is most important is that you keep in mind what you really want vs. what you really don’t want, while being mindful of what’s valuable to your counterpart. This will help keep you oriented when plans go awry as they often do.
Whoever gets emotional first and loses their cool loses. People who are acting on emotion are not thinking clearly. They lose focus, they forget what’s really important, and they exclusively see things in the near-term. If you are not thinking clearly then you can’t negotiate towards the best outcome. Getting emotional is easy in negotiations; you are human after all. However, if you do find yourself getting emotional take a few deep breaths, or feel free to ask for a time out. Collect yourself, and remember what’s really most important to you, and what you’re after.
A Lack of Self-Awareness
All too often people are woefully lacking in self-awareness, and they don’t have any idea how the world perceives them. Getting outside of yourself is not an easy task, but if you want to be a good negotiator you must be self-aware. Do you fidget? What do you do when you are nervous? Do you lean on “crutches” in conversations like saying “umm” and “you know what I mean” too much when you’re off?
Davin described his own struggle with this in that he’s a big guy with a resting face that’s, shall we say… “less than warm and comforting”. What I really mean to say is that Davin’s resting face has that “I’m angry and possibly considering violence” kind of look. Of course, I’m kidding, kind of, but the point is that his resting face could make people feel uncomfortable, and he has to be consistently consciously aware of this.
The Fallacy of Reciprocity
Yes, it is natural according to human nature to act with reciprocity to those that do us favors. However, in a negotiation reciprocity is not always a given. Just because you offer something to your counterpart does not mean they will be compelled to act in kind. Giving away something of value in hopes your counterpart will reciprocate is folly.
Negotiation isn’t about getting what you want, it’s about making the other person want what you have. Negotiation is an art and a science that can be mastered by anyone willing to study the craft and practice. Negotiation is anything but easy, and apart from public speaking, and death, can be one of the scariest experiences people have. However, if the craft is learned and performed well it can play a vital role across a multitude of facets in your life to advance you forward.
Why is it that since the dawn of time Sales and Marketing departments have been bitter foes? In the first company that ever existed was Cain the VP of Sales and Able the VP of Marketing, or maybe it was the other way around. At companies around the world these departments seem to view the other as the personification of their respective cliches. Marketers see salespeople as flashy, jet-setting attention seekers, that drive fast cars, and wear fancy clothes. Respectively, salespeople all too often see their marketing colleagues as vegan moustachioed hipsters, jonesing for their next IPA or pour-over coffee, depending upon the time of day of course.
The bottom line is that there is a palpable line of delineation between these respective departments. Not surprisingly this division serves only to draw a negative impact on team harmony, company culture, customer experience, and revenue. To be clear this is a manufactured division that consistently exists across a myriad of companies for no other reason than the detestable and inexcusable reason of “because it’s always been that way”.
No company should suffer the cost from this self-inflicted division between Marketing and Sales departments. What companies truly need is a transformational alignment between these respective departments. A transformational alignment that’s brought about by Marketing and Sales understand their respective roles in the sales cycle, and most importantly for Marketing to assume the ethos of “Sales at Scale”.
The Marketing Ethos “Sales at Scale”
Let’s be clear about something; Marketing and Sales are on the same team when it comes to the sales cycle. In the context of how Marketing and Sales should work together in an ideal sales cycle we should look no further than how major league baseball teams handle their pitching rotation in a nine inning game. Simply put, in baseball you have the starting pitcher that starts the game, throws four to six innings, and sets up the rest of the game for a successful outcome. The middle relief pitcher comes in for a couple of innings to move the game along, and finally, you have the fabled “closer” that comes in the 8th or 9th inning to bring the heat, and secure the win. This is precisely how the roles of Marketing and Sales should play out in the sales cycle. Marketing serves as the first encounter with a prospect, and they carry the prospect forward in the sales cycle. Naturally, as things progress Sales comes in to carry the engagement forward and closes the deal.
Once this fundamental principle of how Marketing and Sales should work together in harmony as part of the sales cycle is understood the “Sales ast Scale” mentality can take hold. The “Sales at Scale” mentality is simply the understanding of Marketing’s role in the sales process and that they are responsible for setting up the Sales team for bountiful success. In this manner Marketing is an extension of Sales, with the main difference being they tell the story at the front-end of the sales cycle with a megaphone. Marketing’s role is to reach out far and wide telling the story of your company to would be prospects. Prospects that answer the call are to be greeted with phenomenally helpful content that directly resonates with their pains and desires. Additional relevant content is made effortlessly available to the prospect until such time they pass the threshold where they become a “sales qualified lead”, at which time the sales reps come in to do what they do best.
This is “Sales at Scale” at work, and it’s far removed from the unfortunate oppositional state of Marketing and Sales departments at most companies.
Marketing’s “Sales at Scale” Ethos Comes Down to Revenue
According to NAICS 88% of the 17,310,600 businesses in the US produce under $10 million dollars a year in revenue. These businesses do not need their Marketing and Sales departments bickering the way they’ve always done. Leaders need to lead out of the status quo and towards a more harmonious way of doing business that provides a better buying experience for the customer, happier employees, and more revenue. Businesses must shape the narrative so that Marketing and Sales understand they each have tremendous responsibility relative to the sales cycle. Once Marketing fully embraces and implements the “Sales at Scale” ethos they can enable the Sales team to experience more success than ever before. Reject status quo, embrace the “Sales at Scale” ethos, and set your company up for the success it deserves.
Everyone experiences lagging sales at some point along their entrepreneurial journey. The downturn in sales can be for any number of different reasons, such as changes in market conditions, new competition, poor sales and marketing tactics, bad press, and so on. It’s natural to want to sniff out the reasons why, but that can cause you to start playing the “blame-game” and pointing fingers at your leaders and employees. As satisfying as it may be to get pissed at your team, it’s not going to fix your revenue problem. While you sort out the root causes behind your dip in sales and form comprehensive strategies to change your circumstances, there is one strategy you can quickly deploy in the meantime to quickly generate revenue and keep your ship afloat.
Lagging Sales | Why and What to Do About It
It’s really fun to see the green arrow on the upward trajectory when revenue is increasing, but as good as that feels, it’s even more shitty when that arrow changes to red and takes a steady dip south. Lagging sales are a near inevitability for all entrepreneurs at some point or another, but that does not make it any less frustrating and disorienting. It’s natural to want to find out why your sales are lagging and then sort out a new strategy to change direction in a way that increases revenue. However, finding the root cause(s) and changing course is rarely an easy, straightforward, or quick process. That can be a big problem when your business runs on revenue and you quickly need to figure out how to boost sales. During this phase, it’s common for stress to run high, patience to be challenged, and tempers to flare. But before we get into what to do, let’s talk about what NOT to do.
Don’t Shit Everywhere By Playing the “Blame Game”
Anger is an easy emotion, and blame is an easy reaction. Both of these are very natural responses, but they are short-sighted, unintelligent, and irreversibly destructive. While it may feel good to get angry and/or place blame on your team in the short term, it will not correct your revenue problem in the long term. Acting on your anger and frustration will only kick your team in the balls, reduce morale, and cause them to pass the blame onto other people on their respective teams. In other words, an entrepreneur’s actions at the top will permeate throughout the rest of your company. A lack of emotional control will create a greater problem for you that you’ll need to dig out of before you can address your revenue problem in a meaningful way.
Yes, you may be frustrated and scared, but don’t screw yourself and your company by throwing a fit. Instead, act with wisdom and follow these steps to get your shit under control:
Take a breath.
Step back so you can gain perspective.
Make the most important thing the most important thing.
Take appropriate actions.
Then, once your issue is behind you, autopsy the situation.
Your Surefire Fast Revenue Strategy | It’s All About Your Customers
While you try to sort out why you have a downturn in revenue and what you should do about it, you need to change the momentum and generate revenue quickly. Quick revenue will help alleviate your stress and put some much-needed wind in the sails of your teams. Fast sales and quick revenue sound nice, but how do you actually go about it? The answer can be found in your customer base.
Of all the people or businesses you can sell to, your current customers offer the lowest barrier to revenue. Existing Agreements and relationships mean you have a smaller hill to climb when it comes to winning trust and you don’t have to deal the logistical minutiae of forging new contracts. With customer trust and Existing Agreements on your side, all you need to do now is follow these steps:
Create a new offer for your current customers.
Ensure your offer creates a sense of urgency by limiting it to a timeframe or volume.
Create a special competition or incentive for your sales team relative to this special offer. Inter-team competition amongst the most competitive people in your company is both healthy and smart.
Put the full force of your marketing department behind the initiative and let them make a first pass with marketing emails, webinar(s), and/or other tactics to “shake the trees” and uncover the “low-hanging fruit.”
Have your sales reps follow up with the top priority deals and then move on to customers with a secondary level of interest.
Yes, declining revenue is frustrating and scary, but that’s no reason to be an asshole and demoralize your team. Keep in mind that as an entrepreneur, you are the leader, and the responsibility for revenue ultimately comes back to you. Playing the “blame-game” is for the weak, and exercising patience is for those with strong character. Work on sorting out your root issues and develop strategies to increase revenue, but in the meantime, you need some quick wins for morale and quick revenue for payroll. The easiest and fastest revenue is found in your current customers, as you have existing trust and Existing Agreements that you can leverage. Build out your special offer, incentivize your team, deploy the power of your marketing department to make the first pass, engage your sales team, and generate some quick revenue to see you through the downturn. Oh, and don’t forget to be a good leader by guiding your team and congratulating them on the good work in the face of adversity.
The Most Important Thing You Need to Know About a Sales Career
A Sales career is absolutely not for everybody. It is an extremely difficult profession that requires copious amounts of time, dedication, energy, and perseverance. The income is volatile, it’s stressful, and your successes and failures are out there for everyone to see. Even if you are a tremendous success for for a set period of time (monthly, quarterly, annually) the score always resets and your back to competing and fighting. The job never stops. It never quits. It’s relentless. There are no paid vacations when you make commission.
If you’re still with me at this point then it’s likely that you’ve either got what it takes at a fundamental level to succeed in sales, or your a masochist. Either way, welcome, and you’re in good company.
So here’s the deal… I’ve compiled a list of key attributes that you MUST have in order to thrive in sales. Hey, thrive is what we all want to do right. Get a job that’s so fulfilling that it does not feel like work? Anyways, I’m not about to get on some Depak Chopra, Tony Robbins, or Oprah pep rally talk track. Just read the list below and if you honestly can’t say “Oh heck to the yes! That’s so me”, then sales is NOT for you.
Seven Fundamental Traits Required to Succeed and Thrive in a Sales Career
1. Relentless Discipline
2. Communication Skills
3. Passion & Purpose
5. Emotional intelligence
7. Harness failure
1. Relentless Discipline
Discipline in sales is doing the things you like, and the things you don’t like, with excellence; consistently. You’ve likely heard the term “sales is a numbers game”. There’s truth to that. The more you take action, put yourself out there, follow through, make the calls, send the emails, write the letters, keep a clean notes and records, etc the more you’ll find yourself in a position to win business. Yes, you’ll need to work “smarter not harder” as well, but that will come with experience. At the start you just need to be relentless, and persistent in your actions. You need to pay special attention to ensure you do the things you may not like doing. I did not really like typing up my notes after a call, but I had to do it. Ultimately, you need to remove choice from the equation. If you give yourself a choice it’s likely you won’t do the tasks you don’t enjoy. You must practice discipline, remove choice, and just do what’s required to succeed. You don’t have to like all of the tasks; you just have to practice relentless discipline and do them.
2. Communication Skills
Sales requires talking to people. It’s that simple. This does not mean you have to be a gregarious and extroverted person necessarily. It just means that you’ll need to clearly articulate ideas, solutions, and value. You’ll need to be able to communicate via email, over the phone, face to face, to a small group, and to a large group. Yes, we may be talking about public speaking in some cases. The National Social Anxiety Center cites “The fear of public speaking is the most common phobia ahead of death, spiders, or heights. The National Institute of Mental Health reports that public speaking anxiety, or glossophobia, affects about 73% of the population.”
The long story short here is that the act of communicating and doing it well is an absolute prerequisite for performing well in sales. If this is not remotely okay with you then sales is absolutely not for you.
3. Passion & Purpose
If you have only “reasons” for what you do you will fail. If you have purpose, you will ultimately succeed. You have to have to have to have establish deep purpose to succeed in sales. The evolved human nature of your customers, your colleagues, and your boss(es) will inevitably see your driving purpose, and this may not be a good thing. If you misalign your fundamental purpose with something wholly selfish they will know. What kind of purpose should you have then? I would highly advise you to embrace a mantra of “I want to offer the most value to my customers, my team, and my company”. It’s not self-centered at all, and that will ring true to those you interact with, and because of that you will break through the evolved “trust barrier” all of your prospects have evolved to grow due to rampant and flagrant deceit. Your customers will know if you’re out for them or if you’re out for yourself. The paradox to this is that the more you value you bring to others the more you will be rewarded with money, political capital, and social capital. Furthermore, in sales you fill face tough times, and dry spells. Purpose fuels passion and you’ll need both to endure.
What is grit? It’s a hell of a thing I can tell you that. Grit is an attribute that I hold in tremendous esteem. When I encounter people who exhibit grit I stand in awe and I keep them close. Grit is what you get when you combine Purpose + Passion + Endurance. Grit is resilience. Grit is you throwing up a middle finger to your f’ed up situation, and persevering. Grit is your ability to pick your self up again and again and again when you get knocked down. Grit is absolute refusal to quite; ever. Sales is profession of rejection. You will be told “no” more than you hear “yes”, and you have to endure. You may hear 100 “no’s” before you hear a single “yes”. If you’re not okay with that, if you can’t handle rejection, then don’t go into sales.
Pro Tip: Over time and once you’ve got your numbers down, you’ll look at those “no’s” as a good thing. The reason for that is that if you know you have to make 99 calls before you get a single “yes” then you’ll be happy when you get a “no” because you know you’re getting closer to your next “yes”, and you’ll want to get through those “no’s” as quickly as possible.
5. Emotional Intelligence
Emotional intelligence is a term that’s broadly overused today in my opinion, so let me put this into perspective as it relates to a profession in sales. The art of sales is unlocked by those who have a mastery of emotional intelligence and communication. Simply having good communication skills will only carry you so far. Great communication skills is somewhat like being a tennis player that only has a great serve. What happens if their opponent happens to return that serve?
When you’re dealing with people (especially in person) it’s a very fluid experience. They will be reacting to what you say in rational and logical ways, as well as irrational and emotional ways. Rarely will your prospect tell you what’s really on their mind, and what they’re feeling. Why would they when it could betray their competitive stance or negotiation advantage?
If you have the innate ability to tune into peoples true emotions and then leverage good communication skills you’ll be a great fit for sales. If you have a hard time reading and understanding peoples emotions and knowing what to do with them then sales is going to be more of a challenge for you. I’m not saying this is an absolute show stopper, but it’s something you’re absolutely going to need to work on.
Note: Emotional Intelligence is not at all unlike the “force” in Star Wars. Emotional intelligence can be used responsibly, but in the wrong hands it’s extremely dangerous. When it’s used with malicious intent it can be a devastatingly destructive force. Never forget this.
You have to want to win. I mean you really have to want to win. There are a certain few people that what I’m about to say will really resonate with. If you desire so much to win because you can’t stand the thought of losing then let me tell you now that you’re made for sales. If you’re a deeply competitive person that fears finishing second you’ll do anything to succeed. Know that sales is a very competitive field and you will go up against other sales people who are training, and learning, and trying to get better. They want to beat you. Will you let them, or will you earnestly strive to improve all aspects of your game/skills/tradecraft so that you can be the most formidable person in your field. Again, if what I’m saying resonates with you then please step into sales, as it’s a career that rewards competition. Sales is one of the few careers that you get to decide how much money you make. The more effort you put in, the harder you work, the more you grow, the more money you will make. Simple as that.
If you’re not a deeply competitive person at your core, then I cannot stress this enough; sales is not the career for you.
7. Harness Failure
In the section directly above I essentially talk about hating to lose. Let me be clear; hate to lose and never be okay with it. However, understand that you will lose. You will fail. You don’t have to like it one bit, but you do need to recognize it for the gift that it is. You lost for a reason. Even though it hurts (I can deeply attest to this) dive headlong into your failure. Sit in your failure, and have the emotional intelligence to be able to look past your bruised ego or hurt feelings to evaluate what occurred objectively. “Why did I lose, and what can I do to prevent that from ever happening again” is the most important question to ask. Losing carries the bitter gift of experience to those willing to embrace it. If you’re not able to do this, then I’d say not only are you not cut out for sales, but you need to work on yourself.
If you’re not a deeply competitive person at your core, then I cannot stress this enough; sales is not the career for you.
No matter what you endeavor to do in life if you are pushing forward you are actively pushing against the world, and the world pushes back. You will get knocked down, but make the big decision when this occurs and embrace your failure so that you can become better, smarter, and stronger. If you decide to learn, get up again, and keep going you have grit. This cycle will wash, rinse, and repeat too, but the good news is that the more you do it the easier it gets. Get comfortable being uncomfortable and you’re in for a hard, but extremely worthwhile ride.