With 15 years in the direct sales profession, I have seen countless talented salesmen that just didn’t make it. They have one of the must frustrating descriptions in all the world – POTENTIAL! The phrase – Don’t be almost! – sums it up nicely. You and you alone have the choice to go beyond almost great and arrive at being great.
I would like to relate a story that demonstrates this nicely. I was riding my mountain bike a couple of weeks ago. It was only 2 days after some heavy rain. The first 2 miles of the trail were dry enough and it was beautiful. I woke up that morning excited with anticipation and had the intention of getting a great workout in. We ventured down a new trail that we hadn’t hit before. This section of the trail happened to be under heavy cover of trees and was still quite wet. After only about 100 yards, we were completely bogged down and had to stop. The thick mud had grabbed onto the tires and had lodged itself in the fork, gears, shifters and basically everywhere that made the bikes go. For the next hour or so, I stood ankle deep in a creek and tried to wash the thick mud from my bike. It was totally caked on and wouldn’t come off no matter what I did. When I finally got enough mud off so that the wheels would actually turn again, I got on my bike and started down the trail. Mud was flinging everywhere. A huge glop of mud flew up and hit me right in the eye. Again, I was over to the side of the trail and stopped again because of something getting in my way. What started as an idyllic ride on a beautiful morning, turned into a frustrating experience. It had the potential of being great but ended up not.
What does that have to do with being a sales person? Well often we allow things (big and little) to stop us from having great days. We allow ourselves to do errands, or we mentally push back the time we planned to go out selling, because of procrastination. We allow obstacles to get in our way and it stops us from controlling our days and making them great. I call it ‘Non-productive, pain relieving work. It is non productive because it takes away from the right activities and it is pain relieving because we tell our selves that it is work so we can feel good when we go home at night.
How can you avoid being almost? Plan your week out. Decide in advance what times you will be working each day. Don’t let anything change that. Planning and thinking should never get in the way of action when action is in the schedule. Know your stats and how much activity it takes to hit your goals and plan accordingly. Don’t let the mud of life bog you down. Car troubles, life troubles, time killers all fight against you and your goals, however you and you alone are in control and can win. So again, I urge you… Don’t be Almost!