I coach and train a lot of salespeople on how to build their business, increase their volume … basically, on how to sell more and sell more often. They are often top performers who have stalled and hit a plateau. When digging in to find what is missing from their business, that gap which has hindered their efforts, I’ve made one overwhelming observation:
They are rarely missing any knowledge, skills, or tools.
Instead, more often than not, they’ve gotten away from the basic training that made them successful in the first place. They are often trying to reinvent the wheel, or they simply stopped doing something that was working well for them. I learned a great sarcastic saying years ago from one of my mentors – “It worked so well that we stopped doing it.” People wind up searching for the next sales “secret” that will boost their business when their main focus should be on executing what they already know works.
It’s like driving a car. When you first learn how to drive, you do everything right: you check your mirrors, you hold the wheel at 10 and 2, you pay a lot of attention to your speed and the road. As you get more comfortable, though, you stop paying attention to those details. When you are new you need to do this because you don’t have the experience to fall back on. However, as you get experience as a driver, you tend to get a little sloppy in your driving habits. If experienced drivers focused in the same way a new driver did, I guarantee that the number of accidents would decrease dramatically.
In the same way, if you feel that your sales results are lower than you want, don’t buy 10 new sales books looking for the magic bullet. Take the time to critically assess the level at which you are doing what you already know. Pull out your initial training manual if you have one, and think back to how you focused when you first started. I’d be willing to bet that there are probably a few things that have slipped out of your process. When you bring those back in you’ll see a jump in your results.
Where can you get back to basics in your business?