The Step You Cut Out In 2009…Might Be You

Fact is, more often than not, when you cut corners in sales the one that is affected most is you.  It is also a fact of business life that we're replaceable, as I've experienced myself. Why is it then that most people don't typically go the extra mile, especially when it is so needed?

This is not to say that there are not plenty of go-getters out there. Today it is critically important to think about making the most of every opportunity, especially with fewer prospects and less marketing dollars. Here is a list of common mistakes when it comes to achieving sales success in a down market:

1. Customer assumptions (examples: won't qualify, didn't want the aftermarket wheels, etc)
2. Market assumptions (examples: should call prospects less, nobody will buy when stocks are down, etc)
3. Other assumptions (examples: every lead will be for the unit we don't have, every customer is a jack, etc)

Taking out critical steps and not following sounds processes is what leads to failure. It's not the lead, not the market, not the model and not the customer. Successful sales people always do more than it takes and live by process. Take the time to build for your success by taking every step necessary. Some ideas you may want to consider for a successful 2009:

1. Create a set of tasks that you achieve every day and make them habit
    Set 1: start of day list (nothing else gets done before this does)
    Set 2: process on every sale with a required sign off or completion checklist
    Set 3: accountability checks throughout the day (follow ups, contacts, management)
    Set 4: end of day list (prepare for the next sales day before you leave and have tasks written down)
2. State, write down and maintain goals
    A. Make them visible and be accountable to them daily, weekly and monthly
    B. Track so you're not surprised
    C. Have others challenge you and check on you (do this with those who are more successful)
3. Learn, learn, learn
    A. Pick up something new as often as possible, even daily (task, idea, expert advice, etc)
    B. Apply sound principals
    C. Check for success, if it's not working…drop it

If you can do at least the above items and don't cut out any steps, you'll not only likely be successful but chances are you'll have saved your own job. In working with dealers last year, at least one sales person at every client didn't know how to work their compensation backwards. In other words, they had no idea how to make the $5,000, $7,500, $10,000 a month they said they wanted to based on more than a simple desire and some idea of units. To top it off, they usually had very little to none of the steps above to guide them.

If you're ready to reinvest in yourself as well as reinvent yourself, the time is now, the reason is you, the purpose is to do what needs to be done and the end game is success.  If you don't want to be in sales, clearly don't want to work Internet
leads and have no desire to do anything but 'wait', you're definitely looking at one clear outcome.

Little steps lead to bigger ones. You learned that as a child and then lost it in the hustle-and-bustle of our world. Remember that walking is controlled falling, that's all. You can fall without failing. Do what it takes to do what you do better. Make 2009 a great year of successes…starting now. Go out there and be great!

Best practices: Professional Insight, Powerful Results

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