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Sales equals income. It’s really that simple. During the past 20-plus years, no matter what business or individual I have dealt with, if there is a cash flow problem, somebody doesn’t know how to, refuses to, or thinks it’s not important to know how to sell.
What many people don’t understand is that the toughest sell of all is selling yourself to yourself. It’s overcoming that “little voice” in your head that says, I’m not that kind of person. What if they don’t like me? What if I look stupid? I’m too old, too young or too dumb. That little voice is Public Enemy No. 1 to your income and personal growth.
I almost got fired from my first sales position (selling calculators door to door), because my little voice wouldn’t let me out of the car to make a sales call. It convinced me to take long coffee breaks in order to avoid the potential scorn. It took making 68 cold calls in one day to finally not care what others thought of me. Now, I don’t necessarily recommend the 68-cold-call solution, but here is what I do suggest.
Practice and role play handling objections. Doing this for 15-30 minutes per week will reduce fear and boost energy and confidence quickly. I have seen this practice increase sales activity by more than 282 percent in a matter of weeks!
Review and debrief every call and interaction. Ask yourself these five critical questions:
- What worked?
- What did not work?
- What did you learn?
- How will you use what you learned to improve the next time?
You will actually look forward to debriefing so you can make quick corrections and get out there and try again.
Another sneaky trick your little voice plays on you has to do with your self-concept. No matter how responsible, diligent or hard working you are, if your self-concept is low, your results will never exceed it. If your little voice beats the daylights out of you and tells you that you are stupid, incapable or a poor salesperson, your self-concept will be low, and your results will follow suit.
So how do you manage that little voice? Here are a couple strategies:
Start with affirmations like, “I’m an awesome salesperson, and I know I can do this.” Repeat this every time doubt seeps in. Your little voice is simply a result of your prior programming, and you can re-program it quickly. I have witnessed immediate 50-85 percent sales increases in teams that have adopted this approach.
Another great way to overcome the little voice in the face of fear is to recall a time in your life when you had a big win. I learned this technique from Tony Robbins, and I use it constantly. Recall where you were, what you saw, how it felt and what you were saying to yourself at the time. When you can recall it, make a fist and shout, “Yes!” Your energy will come up, and you will walk into your call with the memory and feeling of success instead of fear.
The bottom line is there is a much bigger person inside of you than you give yourself credit for. When you learn to master your little voice, the big, bold, powerful, rich you will emerge. It is your destiny. Now, be awesome!