By Jeff Shore
Let’s be honest. If you’re in a sales funk you don’t need the same old advice you’ve heard before – think positive; visualize success; start a gratitude journal.
That’s all good advice and could be helpful in working your way out of your slump.
But I don’t want to talk about slowly inching your way out of a funk. I want to talk about vaulting out of that Godforsaken state and into top performance mode right now.
Disclaimer: If you’re looking for an easy path to overcome this difficult problem, you’re reading the wrong article. But if you’re truly interested in doing whatever it takes to get turned 180 degrees away from a sales slump, read on.
It’s not easy, but as Tom Hanks said in A League of Their Own, “It’s the hard that makes it great”!
Ready? Really – I mean it. Ready?!
1. Work Really Hard, Really Fast
Lethargy kills. Try not working out for a month (or a year) and see what it does to your motivation.
On the other hand, action begets action. And a lot of action begets a lot more action.
The first thing you need to do to vault out of a slump is to create a dramatic boost in activity.
You’ll get immediate results, but more importantly you’ll train your brain to kick into high gear. You’ll send a message to your mental muscle that says, “Oh crap – this guy is serious. I need to pick up the pace.”
The best way to do this is to set limited periods of time where you are 100% locked in on high-value targets (see point two). Set goals to work like a madman for a limited period of time .
Eliminating all the distractions and getting zoned in for just 30 minutes can have amazing results, to both your productivity and your mindset.
Do something! Make it aggressive and purposeful. But do something!
2. Find the High Value Targets
Let’s face it – when you’re in a slump, you probably spend too much of your sales day on activities that don’t really matter. Identify those activities that give the highest possible return with the lowest time invested and do them.
Here’s the reality you must face: whatever those activities are, I can just about guarantee they will be uncomfortable (see point three). If those activities were comfortable my bet is you’d probably be doing them already.
3. Get Comfortable Being Uncomfortable
There is no growth without discomfort – period. You want to bust out of a slump? Then you better learn to deal with the fact that discomfort is the only path that will get you there.
Stop running from discomfort. Recognize the fact that if it doesn’t challenge you it doesn’t change you.
Embrace that discomfort. Enjoy the discomfort. Smile and dive in when others turn tail and run away.
In other words, make the stinkin’ phone call!!!
4. Recruit Your Own Sales Team
Want to increase your efforts in launching out of a slump? Then get others to help.
I’m talking about your past customers. Call those people you’ve already worked with and let them know you’re looking to grow your business.
Ask them if they know anyone who might need your product or service. Then provide a script to make it easy for them to send an introductory e-mail (copying you, of course).
Yes, it’s uncomfortable. But that’s awesome! (Re-read point three)
5. Plan an Amazing Reward
If you want to slowly crawl out of a slump, give yourself little rewards. One extra phone call today and I’ll treat myself to a coffee at Starbucks. (Ah, that’s cute.)
But if you want to vault yourself out of a slump GO BIG! Reward yourself with a frickin’ Mercedes. Plan a trip to Maui and stay at the Four Seasons.
Look, I don’t know what floats your boat, but why would you aim so small? Come up with something that seriously motivates you to push yourself. Plan a reward where the emotional benefit far outweighs the discomfort of action.
Bottom line: if you really want to launch yourself out of a sales slump you need to think differently. Way differently.
Dare to challenge yourself. Dare to deal with your discomfort. Dare to dream big.