Nobody ever said that a career in sales would be easy, but there is absolutely no reason to make it more difficult than it needs to be. If sales people planned, practiced, monitored, and adjusted as much as most other business professionals do, their results would be incredible.

Follow these 5 steps and I think you will find your career as a salesperson will be easier and your results amazing.

  1. Realize you are part of a team and put the individual talents to work.
  2. Not every client is a good one. Identify in detail (revenue, geography, industry, etc.) what a good client looks like for you and avoid the rest (including getting rid of the clients you have that don’t fit that profile).
  3. Have a personal annual plan in place and review it often. At a minimum, the plan needs to identify what you want your “me inc.” to look like at the end of the year, an honest assessment of where you are starting from, and specific actions you need to take to achieve your goal.
  4. Develop and regularly practice a sales process that is repeatable, yet flexible. Look at your process from the perspective of the prospect and make sure that the prospect (even if they don’t become a client) will receive value from the time spent with you. It is time to quit teasing prospects about the value they would receive as a client and start delivering value while they are still a prospect.
  5. Make yourself accountable for your results. Find a coach, mentor, manager, peer, whoever, just find someone who you can count on holding you accountable for driving results and following the previous 4 steps.

None of this is difficult and none of it takes too much time. I will argue that you don’t have time to not do it and by not doing so, you are making your job more difficult.

 

Photo by Esben Emborg.