Urgency is an innate, emotional need to get something done now. It cannot be taught but events can influence it. Let say it’s April 14th and you haven’t done your taxes. A public service announcement plays on the radio, talking about the consequences of not filing. Your gut aches. The ache is your conscious triggers fear which hopefully results in action.
Many salespeople and sales leaders lack urgency while others have trouble managing it.
When we react, we are driven by emotion, and when we respond, we balance that emotion with rational thought. Great salespeople have tremendous urgency to act but they apply in situationally appropriate ways. By doing so they produce equally great outcomes.
Two-days ago, the Boston Bruins beat the Saint Louis Blues after losing the previous game in Boston. Both teams brought urgency and emotion to game three. The difference was that Boston played with tremendous urgency but was patient enough to take advantage of the opportunities presented. Saint Louis was so invested in playing a physical game that they made mistakes.
Urgency without restraint does not work as well.
Salespeople worry about being overly “aggressive” with their follow-up. Much of this is because they accepted a put-off and or did not gain agreement for a logical next step which usually results in the salesperson chasing the prospect. When a prospect goes missing urgency is probably the missing ingredient. The adage “time kills all deals” is best seen as absolute, yet many salespeople patiently wait for the prospect to respond. If they had more urgency for getting to a no, they would waste less time, end up with more yeses and both parties would be a lot happier.
Salespeople are usually emotional by nature. One reason salespeople allow time to pass after a put-off is their own Need for Approval. Their urgency is trumped by fear of losing the deal or the prospect. Because a majority of salespeople need to be liked as well as some difficulty managing their emotions, they need help.
Here are some ways to develop more urgency and use it more effectively.
- Slow-down in the discovery process
- Take the time to really identify Need, Impact and Compelling Reasons
- Trust that by asking probing questions you create value with good prospects
- Do more pre-call strategy
- Play a little hard to get
- Ask for more time when scheduling your calls
- Use the Sales DNA Modifier
- Role-play weekly
- Stop trying to be perfect, we learn by making mistakes
- Bring more humor and playfulness
- When the momentum shifts go for no
- Develop some compelling personal goals
- Publicly commit to things you are going to change
- Get your spouse or significant other involved in holding you accountable
- Trust that “luck” happens when you consistently do more of the right things
If you want to learn more about how to find and hire great sales people attend this highly actionable thirty-minute webinar.