As a business owner and team leader, my sales team constantly tells me how they desire to be the “best.” Most people in sales want to be the best producer and the best salesperson. It’s natural to desire success. They want to shine their inner light on the team and their production. In other words, they want to show their full potential and let the dreams in their heart come to fruition. They want to be significant and do something big in their life! I don’t blame them; I want this too! Here’s the thing. If you want something big to happen, you can’t WAIT for it to happen. It would be best if YOU took action. Your inner light isn’t just going to shine by itself. YOU have to turn it on. It would be best if you gave it all your energy. Just like in sports, you have to PLAY in the game. You can’t just sit on the bench and watch others live your dream. There’s always going to be an excuse as to “why” it’s hard right now. Some of the “excuses” I often hear are: I am a single parent, I’m caring for a sick family member, I need more training, the leads aren’t like they used to be, I am working multiple jobs, I can’t keep up with my kid’s schedule, I am homeschooling, I have lousy time management, I don’t have a good excuse. Maybe you’re trying to carpe diem and live life in the moment. Hard to “get er done” when the beach is calling your name. Perhaps you’re sitting at home THINKING about winning so much that it is distracting you from DOING. I’m here to tell you you CAN take action and be who you KNOW you can be. Stop waiting for things to happen FOR you. Stop blaming when things don’t go your way. Let’s dive in and see what you can do right now.
Saying “I want to WIN” in your mind, on a goal sheet, or to your boss doesn’t magically make your dreams happen. Ever hear “actions speak louder than words”? That’s because they do. When you show up and put yourself IN the game, you prove yourself. You gain respect. You take steps to reach the goals you have. If you wait for the perfect time, you will only watch time pass you by while others, less qualified than you, live your dreams.
Waiting for ideal conditions is another one of my pet peeves within the sales industry. “If only I had X technology, X product, X client, etc. Look, I might sound cruel for saying so, but complaining you don’t have enough or the right conditions to perform is a weak way of thinking. It will slow you down and place you from in the game to on the sidelines. There are plenty of people doing far more with far less than you have. Make the BEST out of what you have. Think of X technology, X product, X client as a bonus if they come along, not a golden ticket or necessary to play.
Get off the bench and get in the game.
How to become MVP:
One thing MVPs have in common is their tenacity, their passion, and their willingness to take risks. In other words, they face fear and play anyway! MVPs don’t stay in their comfort zone- they are constantly making bold moves and try their best. They seek discomfort. They don’t make excuses. They power through. Be honest. WHO on your sales team is the MVP? Is it you? If the answer is no, why not? What is the MVP doing that you are not? Do you find yourself jealous? Do you make excuses? Do you blame others or your leaders? Are you taking risks, are you making calls, are you doing whatever it takes or playing it safe?
“You have to take risks. We will only understand the miracle of life fully when we allow the unexpected to happen.” – Paulo Coelho.
Most people within sales teams play it safe. They get comfortable with what they can get away with doing (or not doing). They know how to get what they need but rarely go above and beyond. They have the commission check they need to stay comfortable and don’t fight to earn more. But that’s how life goes, not just sales. Are you the type of person who knows your purpose and potential? Are you living it? Are you stepping up or sitting down? Are you afraid you will miss the ball if you’re in the game? Are you fearful of embarrassment? Are you fearful of sounding uneducated when you make the calls? Are you afraid of what the client might think of you if you ask for the sale? Are you afraid should you not explain why X product isn’t available, the client might go somewhere else? Do you know the answers to common objections? Do you know how to guide the prospect to the sale? Are you afraid the economy is terrible, and you shouldn’t ask for a bold sale? Are you playing to WIN? If you’re off the bench and in the game, now is the time to ask yourself are you playing to WIN or playing it safe. Are you letting fear control your performance? I’m here to tell you that FEAR will never be what dictates the MVP’s plays. Sure, the MVP might have fear, but they shut it down. They do it anyway, despite the fear and excuses. That’s how MVPs lead to victory.
Victory isn’t by accident. Victory comes after practice and drills.
If you’re a sports fan, you might be watching in awe as the top players lead to victory. But there’s a LOT that happened leading up to game day. Practice and drills are part of what makes great players.
Unfortunately, most salespeople would rather be in their comfort zone than doing “drills” or investing in getting better. They are afraid to practice with the team out of fear of how they will look or sound- so they hold back and never share their true talents. Does this resonate with you? Have you been asked to read a script in front of the team? Or have you been asked to role play with each other? Have you been asked to recite what you say to a fresh lead? Are you willing to do so? I mean, not just willing but enthusiastically willing? MVPs aren’t afraid to practice a play in front of their team. Not only are they not afraid, but they want to see the tape afterward. They WANT constructive criticism from their team so they can get better. They don’t think they are too good to be critiqued. They don’t say, “I’m the best already. I don’t need to practice.” They aren’t embarrassed to try new things. Sure, it’s uncomfortable, but as I said, MVPs embrace being outside their comfort zone, and they are eager to be held accountable. They know there are daily tasks they must do to accomplish and keep the status they have. So they show up every day, not just on game day. You’ll never know what was possible for yourself if you don’t run the drills. Then, when it’s time to make the big play, will you be ready?
Being cozy and comfy in your home or office, maybe even making a decent amount of calls and money, is not “ready.” So I’m asking: are you on the hunt? Are you rehearsed? Do you have tools in your toolbox? What about your potential? What about your dreams? What about the significance you wanted? If you are fulfilled and happy about being on the sidelines, that is great. But I’m willing to bet most of you who are reading this want more. Something is nudging you to do better. You know you can earn more. You envision your life being the MVP you know you’re capable of being, and you want it.
One great quote I love is, “You can fish instead of waiting to be fed.” It’s another way to say, “get off the sidelines!” Take action. You don’t need to wait. Even if you’re getting leads from your company, you can discover your own. You can take personal responsibility for your results. If you have goals for yourself, you needn’t wait for your boss or company to make it happen for you. Find your fish. There are ways to generate your leads. Find your own training. There is so much sales training out there, from podcasts to youtube and more. Invest in yourself. Don’t just expect that you are entitled to company freebies.
If you get in the game with mindful preparation and acting on your goals, you will achieve a new level of growth you have never seen before. You will take things to a whole new level. How? Confidence. Even if you think you’re confident now, growth translates to increased confidence, and it will spawn development and motivation to set bigger goals. It is amazing who we become when we take ourselves off the sidelines.
As we approach June, the Many resolutions/goals you set back in January may have faded into your comfort zone. Take a look back at the enthusiasm you had on the New Year. Are you taking action to reach your goals and live the life you have imagined? It is not too late to unleash the power within you. You were a lot of talk on January 1st. You made lofty claims and set big goals. You defined what you wanted and looked forward to December 31st when you could say “I DID IT.”. You talked the talk. So what happened? Action. It would be best if you take action NOW. You need to rehearse. It would be best if you were ready. Take personal responsibility. You can still make big plays. You can walk the walk. You can be your own hero. You can be the MVP. Are you with me on this?