I believe that sales success comes down to one thing, just one thing. It is not education, lucky breaks or pedigree. It comes down to your ability to be resilient. Your ability to get back up, and try again no matter the circumstance or the reasons for losing on the first go round.
In the years I have been studying successful salespeople, I have found they all have one thing in common. They are resilient. They all have the skill, the stamina and drive to stay in the game no matter the odds or the number of times they fail.
So what is resilience? There are two definitions that I really like. The first is the ability to withstand or recover quickly from difficult conditions. The second is the ability to recoil or spring back into shape after bending, stretching or being compressed.
Those two pretty much some it up. Sales is not for sissies! The key to your success is directly related to the speed from which you can recover from losing a deal or missing your goals.
The great thing about resilience is, that it is a skill that can be built. These are steps you can take to strengthen your resilience muscle.
4 Strategies To Build The Most Important Sales Skill
- Expect it – The first important step in the process to build resilience is to expect defeat, failure and disappointment. Understand they are a vital part of the process and something that goes with the territory. Too often, we have an expectation of instant gratification or instant success. Expecting to always win takes the vital energy you need to get back up and try again.
- Trust The Journey – my friend Beth Brownlee first shared this phrase with me, and now it has become my mantra. “Trust The Journey” means that you believe that every challenge, obstacle or defeat you have is part of the process. It is also part of your “journey” to your success. When you “Trust The Journey” you take a new perspective to viewing losses or failures. By embracing loss rather than resisting it, you open your mind to new ideas and new opportunities.
- Build Community – To strengthen your resilience muscle then you need to strengthen your community. The more you surround yourself with people who are driven to succeed and don’t sweat the small stuff, the more of that person you will become. Find people who understand the importance of resilience, and are working hard to strengthen their resilience muscle. The stronger your community the stronger your resilience.
- Self-Motivation – spend time reading, learning and educating yourself on people who are resilient. The list is endless believe me. You will be hard pressed to find someone you admire who has not pushed through some pretty tough obstacles. Stories like how Michael Jordan was cut from the high school basketball team, or how Lucille Ball who had several box office flops before becoming the “Queen of Entertainment.” You can motivate yourself by learning from the journeys of other successful people. This will help you build your resilience muscle. You gain strength from learning failure; defeat and losing are an important and critical part of the process. You’ll learn new and innovative strategies on how these successful people put themselves back on the road to success.
Success in today’s constantly shifting and changing marketplace requires resilience. The more you can learn about this important skill, the more you invest in strengthening it, the more successful you are going to be. While I think that resilience is important for every aspect of our lives, when it comes to sales there is no way you can succeed without it.
Sales Leadership Resources:
Best Sales and Sales Leadership Book Ever – co authored with Connie Podesta