Remember the “Little Engine Who Could” from childhood? If not, visit your bookstore and while you’re there check out Dr Seuss’s “Oh! The Places You’ll Go”.
Selling is a contact profession. We interact with personalities, big and small egos, honesty and dishonesty, consensus problems, fear, money and its associated baggage.
This week Frank Belzar and I interviewed Minh Pham who, with other experts, including Dave Kurlan, authored “Stepping Stones to Success”. In Minh's chapter he talks about actualizing your true potential. His work offers great lessons for the Sales profession.
One of his most important messages is “clean house”. Identify your head trash, negative self talk and fear and start taking the trash out regularly. The “Little Engine Who Could” didn’t spend time on what wouldn’t or couldn’t happen. If he had he wouldn’t have reached the top of the mountain.
Minh also says that when it comes to change you need to act you way into it and not think your way into it. If you think before you act your fear and head trash will almost certainly talk you out of it. In the film “Anger Management” Jack Nicholson calls this “Self Hypnotic Negative Imagery”.
I’ve used Dr Seuss’s book to begin many training programs. Why? First, it is a story and we all love a good story but more importantly, salespeople spend too much time worrying about what has already happened and what might happen. This means they are not truly conscious. Put another way we aren’t present because we are spending our time thinking about the past and or the future. Dr Seuss nails this.
Selling is just an illustration of life, full of twists and turns, successes and failures and what we call surprises. Get used to change, embrace it, have fun with it, and stop fighting it. The primary objective of selling is to achieve an outcome, preferably a sale. Success comes though your ability to navigate the journey and manage your head trash.