Maybe you’re not in a big slump, but just can’t seem to hit the quota numbers. Let’s be kind and call it “sales
Don’t panic. Don’t press too hard. Don’t get down on yourself. Don’t get mad. And above all — don’t quit.
OK, OK, there’s a bit of a slowdown, but don’t be too quick to blame your lack of
performance on “it” before you take a hard look at “you.”
Take a closer look at “slump” before you blame “economy.”
Here are the prime causes of sales slumps:
Poor belief system – I don’t believe that my company or product is the best. I don’t
think that I’m the best.
Poor work habits – Getting to work late, or barely “on time.” Not spending your time with people who
can say “yes.”
Symptoms of a sales slump:
- Misperceptions that lead to sour grapes – I think my prices are too high, or my territory is bad.
Outside pressure – Caused by money problems, family problems, or personal problems.
- Poor personal habits – Too much drink, too
much food, or too much after hours play.
Boss giving crap instead of support – Someone who says, “You better do it,” instead
of, “I know you can do it.”
- Events that go against you – New sales person passes you, someone else gets promoted and you
knew it should have been you.
- Customer cancels a big order – Weakening your personal belief or causing severe money
problems — or both.
- Getting depressed – From any of the above.
When you’re in a slump, you begin to press for
orders instead of working your best game-plan (which is: “sell to help the other person,” and let your sincerity of purpose shine
through). When you have the pressure to sell, the prospect senses it, and backs off.
Then things get worse. You can’t sell seem to sell at all, and begin to panic. Oh my gosh, I can’t sell a thing, I’ll get fired, miss my house payment, can’t pay my bills —
Aaaahhhhhh! False fear. Relax, you’re better than that.
What causes a slump? You do. Therefore, you are the best (only)
person too fix it.
Here’s a prescription to help cure sick sales:
Study basics. Usually what’s wrong is not complicated. In fact, you probably know what’s wrong. Your problem is that you think it’s someone or something else’s fault. Wrong. List two or three areas that need immediate care.
- Have the guts to take action.
- Revisit your plan for success, or make a new one. Today.
- List 5 things you could be doing to work smarter AND harder. Make a plan to work as smart as you think (or say) you are. Hard work can change your luck.
- Change your presentation. Try a different approach. Take the customer’s perspective.
- Talk to your five best customers. Ask them to evaluate your situation.
- Get someone you respect to evaluate you
presentation. Take them with you on sales calls. Get a coach.
- Visit your mentor and have a new plan to discuss when you get there.
- Get to work an hour before everyone. Put in more productive time.
- Stay away from pity parties. Don’t make a slump worse by whining or hanging around a bunch of negative thinkers and underachievers.
- Hang around positive, successful people. This can be the best way to get to success.
- Have some fun. Go to the comedy club, do a little extra of what you like to do best, unless too much fun is the cause of your slump.
- Spend 30 minutes a day (in the morning is best) reading about your positive attitude. Then listen to attitude tapes and sales tapes in the car ALL DAY.
- Listen to your favourite song just before the presentation. Go in to your next call singing.
- Take a day off. Chill out, take stock, make a plan, re-group, re-energize, and return with renewed determination and better energy.
- Rearrange your office. Shake things up a little, make them look new.
- Audio tape your presentations live. Then listen in the car immediately afterwards. Take notes. Act to correct.
- Video tape your presentation. Watch it with others who can give you constructive feedback.
- Take the best salesperson you know out on calls with you for a day. Get a written evaluation after each call.
- Take your boss with you on calls for a week. You’ll get more feedback than you can handle, but it will help.
- Avoid negative talk and negative people like the plague. Find people who will encourage you, not bring you down.
Other random notes on the truth about slumps:
The best way to get out of a slump is keep it in perspective. Once you accept the fact that you can change it, you can begin to recover. Be cool — you’re the greatest, if you think you are. — believe in the most important person in the world — you.
Brad Sugars founded the brand Action International in 1993 when he realized there was a disconnect between business advice and implementation. The answer was Action! Brad Sugars created a business coaching company so that business owners throughout the world can realize their goals in business. Today the company is known as ActionCOACH. To learn more about business, visit Brad Sugars Review blog!