Alright, hold onto your hats because I’ve got a story to share that might just resonate with your sales journey. Do you know those moments when closing and pipeline generation just seems to take a nosedive? Well, let me paint you a picture: imagine my sales graph looking like a roller coaster, and the craziest drop was in the dreaded month of October 2020. Yeah, it was one of those facepalm-worthy moments that made me question if I accidentally pressed the self-destruct button on my sales strategy.
But here’s the kicker – I’m not one to let a setback define my path. Oh no, I thrive on challenges. So, buckle up, because we’re about to dive into the nitty-gritty of those tough times when even seasoned sales pros, like yours truly, find themselves doing the awkward “imposter syndrome” dance.
Crossing Murky Waters of Self-Doubt
First things first, let’s talk about the beast known as imposter syndrome. You know, that little voice in your head that insists you’re not as smart or capable as others think you are? Believe it or not, even the most seasoned sales warriors have danced with that devil. But guess what? Confronting that self-doubt head-on is a power move, and I’m about to spill the beans on how I wrestled with it while navigating the intricacies of my expertise. In sales, we are taught and encouraged to be persistent. Sadly, we are not quite as persistent with ourselves.
Spotting the Hidden Landmines
· Pipeline Rollercoaster: Looking back at the slump, it became pretty darn clear that my sales downfall wasn’t a random act of fate. Nope, it was all thanks to a sneaky glitch in my lead generation pipeline that decided to rear its ugly head during the sunny days of summer. You see, I’m owning up to my blunders because fixing this glitch wasn’t just about a quick fix – it was about making smart decisions. Remember, you cannot take time off of pipeline generation, it compounds value over time – what you put in today pays off big in the future.
So what did I do? I literally sat down and listened to some of my most successful calls and my most recent ones. And guess what, I found something. In the newest calls I made two subtle changes in the ways I described my services. And I specifically remember changing them because I was just bored with the old ones. And since I follow the data, I changed it back. And guess what? It worked, my conversations became more positive, and the sales started happening again.
· Mind Your Mental Health: Now, I know this might sound unconventional, but talking about mental health in the sales game was a game-changer. No, seriously! It’s not just about sales; it’s about our holistic well-being. And guess what? Market trends are pointing toward mental health becoming a big concern for businesses. For more on this, you can hear my story about how I made my depression my superpower.
Dr. Rick Hanson has a quote, the brain is like velcro for negativity and Teflon for positivity. It will take more effort to think positively about yourself than it will negatively. Yes, you are allowed to marinate in your mind for a little bit, just not too long. We have even gone so far as to literally set a timer for 10 minutes and give ourselves the safe space to mull on the negative. And then, we reset the timer for 10 minutes, and write down positive things to help get us out of the downward spiral.
· Taming the Competitive Beast: Ah, the consulting world – it’s like a wild jungle out there. The competition was heating up, and I knew it was time for a strategic makeover. And what better way to do it than by staying updated with the latest trends in the industry? After all, if you want your services to shine, you’ve got to stay in the spotlight. And that’s when I made a big adjustment to the services I offer. Not only do I still offer my sales training. I adjusted and added Go To Market and Founder Led Sales to Sales Led Sales advisory services. A few blog posts, a little SEO, some LinkedIn and other posts on social got a few pieces of new business in the door too.
Taking Charge of the Comeback
Oh, and one more thing. I rolled up my sleeves and took charge:
· Power-Packed Live Training: Teaming up with the incredible Scott Leese, I hosted my very first live training session in the buzzing city of Austin, Texas. And boy, did it inject a mega dose of energy into my strategies!
· Unveiling Fresh Partnerships: I had some big news lined up for 2020, and the anticipation was already adding some zing to my sales arsenal.
· Because I’m not just about the sales pitch and I love helping others I decided to launch my very own newsletter, “Richard’s Thoughts” – a cool way to connect with a wider audience and dish out insights.
· Content Bonanza: I went on a content creation spree, meticulously planning out a treasure trove of blog posts for the next 13 weeks. SEO anyone? You bet it played a starring role here.
· Embracing Diverse Services: I gave my service lineup a makeover, introducing fresh offerings like creating a new sales training and reinforcement program, sales process creation, cold call boot camps, and sales management training courses. It’s like hitting refresh on my sales strategy.
· Personal Touch for the Win: I rolled out personalized online sales training packages, complete with exclusive deals and one-on-one coaching sessions. Hey, everyone loves a little VIP treatment.
· Zen Mode Activated: Oh, and let’s not forget about meditation. I hopped on the mindfulness train, using tools like @headspace to sharpen my focus and gain some serious mental clarity.
Rising from the Ashes
Believe it or not, I managed to flip the script. That lackluster October? It morphed into one of the most triumphant months in my business’s history. And let me be clear – this wasn’t some smoke-and-mirrors magic trick. Nope, it was all about strategic moves and staying ahead of market trends.
The Winning Recipe
As I look back on this wild rollercoaster ride, I can distill the formula for overcoming a sales slump into a few key ingredients:
· Embrace Decisiveness: Overthinking? Ain’t nobody got time for that. Making decisions with confidence, backed by insights, is where it’s at.
· Take Calculated Risks: Growth often comes from stepping out of your comfort zone. What might seem like a colossal risk could be your ticket to victory.
· Shift the Mindset: Often, the biggest obstacle is the one we create in our minds. It’s time to break free from those limits, adopt a growth-oriented mindset, and embark on a transformation journey.
In a nutshell
So, what’s the grand takeaway from my whirlwind journey? Well, shaking off a sales slump isn’t just about brushing off the dirt and getting back on the horse. It’s about embracing change, letting go of those self-imposed doubts, and taking the plunge into the unknown. My journey from a sales downturn to soaring success isn’t just a blueprint of tactical maneuvers; it’s a shift in perspective that transforms a setback into a setup for victory. So, go on, break those mental chains, jump into action, and unleash your inner sales superstar. Because in a market that’s all about evolution and resilience, you’ve got all the tools you need to come out on top.
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