Complacency and Fear are Sales Busters
Prospecting is the engine that propels anyone in sales. Without consistently initiating contact with prospective customers to talk with, your sales will plummet and everybody loses. Studies confirm that 80% of all salespeople fail in their first year because of the fears associated with prospecting. 40% of veteran producers with more than five years -- experience severe sales slumps due to fears associated with prospecting.
Fears are productivity busters that drain our energies and makes sales prospecting emotionally difficult. Fears most commonly recognized in the sales world are fear of rejection, fear of loss, fear using the telephone, fear of not be prepared, group selling and a host of others. All of which jeopardize existing relationships with customers and stand in the way of acquiring new customers -- resulting in loss revenue for companies and loss income for salespeople.
Eliminating those fears is something that is easy to overcome. But sales managers and trainers who tell sales rookies and seasoned professionals to do the things you fear most and it will go away -- haven't a clue of what harm is being done. The person who is motivated, has sales goals and is reluctant to cold calls, self-promotion, selling to groups or any other forms of call reluctant is legitimately fearful. Forcing that person to make cold calls on the telephone is only imbedding the fear deeper. It is like pounding a nail into a person's leg and at the same time telling them to think positive and it won't hurt.
Fears are feeling establish when we allow ourselves to, mindlessly, recite self-limiting thoughts. To overcome distressful gut wrenching feelings we must replace fear producing self-talk with non-fear-producing statements.
Sales, is a stressful business causing negative mind chatter in a person to conjure up all kinds of unpleasant thoughts. When prospecting, it is not at all uncommon for the salesperson to check out momentarily by going into a state of self-hypnosis reciting counterproductive, contorted and self-defeating talk. When that occurs, you need to replace it with self-enhancing self-talk, which will result in constructive emotional responses.
When complacency and stress sets in -- beware. Check what is going on with your self-talk. It just may be that you are slowly being contaminated. When you are having feelings of distress and despair over any form of prospecting, listen carefully to yourself. Are you hearing highly charge and emotional words like -- couldn't, terrible, awful, can't, hate -- that automatically invoke self-talk statements that are inhibiting your career.
Here is a simplified but useful way of reversing self-diminishing self-talk:
1. Close you eyes and take three deep breaths.
2. While you are exhaling, slow your self-talk down to the point that you are reciting, your words, in slow motion. Listen for your self-defeating talk.
3. Disconnect your self-defeating talk with goal-supporting non-fear producing statements.
4. Continue the reinforcement by visualizing a positive outcome along with your non-fear producing statements.
Your focus in this simplified exercise is to realign your emotional energy. Fear takes on many different forms and drains us of energy, while robbing us of many valuable hours we could be using more productively for prospecting and growing our business.