Passion and enthusiasm are the materials that you must possess as a part of your sales foundation. Positive attitude is paramount and does come first, but the next building blocks are passion or enthusiasm or both. You need to possess at least one of the traits. Without one or the other you will end up like poor Pooh living off of the generosity of others (See below for Pooh reference). Bouncing from one assignment to the next. Never realizing your full potential.
If you were to make bread dough, you would have a choice of either white flour or wheat flour. Both of them do that same thing but they each give the bread a distinct flavor. Same principle applies here. You have to decide which one, if not both, you possess and nurture it along so it can mature further. Also, think of the water you add to the mix as your attitude. If you use ice-cold water (bad attitude) the dough will not rise very fast. Its growth, or rise, will retard for some time. It will not rise without the outside influence of warmer temperatures (People). Now if you add hot water the dough will explode with growth. (Please see my article “Sales Foundation” below for information on attitude.)
Many people ask me “Vince what about product knowledge?” I agree product knowledge is important, but that can be taught, and I will cover that at a later time. Passion and enthusiasm, on the other hand, you must already possess. I feel it can not be taught or learned. It must come from within the individual. In the beginning people will forgive you, for a time, if you have limited product knowledge as long as you are enthusiastic or passionate. Remember: Science and data make you think, but your emotions make you act. (I did not think of that. It came from Roger Savvy.) No passion, no enthusiasm, no action.
Now you need to think and decide right now whether you have passion or enthusiasm for your company, product, industry, or sales. If not, then move on. There are plenty of Professional Sales People who love what they do and are passionate about it. They also practice their craft (A topic for a later discussion). Some of you may think that you do not want to be pushy or to salesy (It’s a word). You do not have to be. You can do consultative selling. I am just asking you to be enthusiastic about it or have some passion about what you are selling. If you are worried about being to salesy, (Again, it’s a word) then please read “The Compassionate Samurai” by Brian Klemmer. It will change your life in sales. Remember, that you are giving a product or service that people need, want, or desire.
So decide now if you have passion or enthusiasm. The choice is yours.
- Lessons from the 100 Acre Wood that we can build on. (vincecalabrese.com)
- Sales Foundation (vincecalabrese.com)
Many Sales Coaches, Trainers, and Speakers will tell you that you need to have a positive attitude in order to make sales. This is the absolute Holy Grail to sales success. Don’t get me wrong, there are other key components need to succeed in sales, but you need the positive attitude first. This must come before all else. Attitude is the foundation that your sales skills are built on. You will lose your ability to persuade people if your attitude is not in check. From the moment you wake up you have a choice of what attitude you’re going to bring to the day. Find ways to get inspired in the morning. It may be a book, song, video, and even your kids or someone special in your life. Whatever it may be…………Do It! We all have rough days, and if you are a professional sales person you will experience a few in your career. Learn the ability to recognize when you going off the positive attitude track and correct it. Or, if it is just too over whelming and you can’t get back on the rails then go home. You are not doing you, your client, your company, your product a service is your head is not on straight and beaming with energy, enthusiasm, and a positive state of mind. I have actually seen other sales reps take the wind out of their competition by changing the other person’s attitude.
Scene: I was calling on an account when I ran into Tom and Mark, two other reps form competing companies. I did not engage in the conversation but I actually witnessed this exchange happen.
Tom: Hey Mark! I haven’t seen you in a while.
Mark: Tom! How are you? I have been really busy.
Tom: Good to hear. So business must be going well.
Mark: Sure is! I am having a pretty good month.
Tom: (Puts his hand on Mark’s shoulder) Hey buddy, are you feeling alright? You kind of pale and you look Drained.
Mark: I feel fine.
Tom: Are you sure? You really do not look well at all.
Mark: I do feel tired. I have been working really hard lately. I am going to go. I’ll catch up with you later Tom.
Tom: Alright buddy. Feel better.
I saw Mark 30 minutes before Tom showed up and Mark was fine. He was upbeat and buzzing around the office. Everything was going his way until Tom showed up. Tom just took the wind out of his sales by slightly changing his attitude for him.
The power of suggestion is powerful. It is even more powerful when you do it to yourself everyday by focusing why you can’t do. Instead you should be focusing on what you can and should do. Choose your attitude, determine you goal and do it with enthusiasm.
Enthusiasm. That is a good word, but that is a topic for another time.
(The names in the above story have been changed to protect the innocent or foolish.)
Watch the video. Change your mind and you will change your world.