Fast Track to Success in Sales!

Kickstart your Sales Career!

Kickstart your Sales Career!

I recently hired 3 new employees for our Tokyo and HK offices. I have been spending the last few months inducting and training them to get them up to speed, ramped up and productive ASAP. I am excited to report that the results are starting to come in 🙂 It has been a rewarding experience for me to work with our new hires, so much potential, so much promise, so much hope. Being a practical optimist, I also know that in the sales game, some will become our rising rock stars, some with spiral down into mediocrity and some will quit and go on their merry way. Having seen and worked with some very talented people as a manager, it reminded me of some critical traits that are consistent in sales winners:

1. PERSONALITY – Working with positive, glass half full, optimistic, can-do attitude (see my previous blog on the practical optimist), hungry people gives me such a rush. Maintaining a positive mindset and doing things with a zing in your step brings in high energy into the environment around you. Working with difficult, negative, toxic, passive-aggressive (defiant thru inactivity), sulky people just drains energy. Someone I used to work with coined the term vampires and santa clauses. A vampire just drains the life out of you with their sinking and stinky attitude while Santa brings in good cheer and hope to all. Good analogy that! So, please leave your vampire fangs at home and come to the office ready to Go! Go! Go!

2. HUMBLE & TEACHABLE – With more than 17 years expereince in the recruitment industry, when I train my new hires and we arrive to some action point, I tell them, don’t fight me or 2nd guess my judgment over every little thing. That will only slow down your development and progress. No need to impress me how smart you are, there will come a time for that. The fastest way to get up to speed is to listen and apply, listen and apply, listen and apply (and repeat). Don’t tell me why it can’t be done without trying it out first. Once you have the results on the big board and you can come up with better ideas, I will happily humble myself and turn the tables around from coach to student.

3. SENSE OF URGENCY – I am a big fan of the saying “you snooze, you lose”. Sales is all about speed. A few hours (even minutes) is the difference between getting to a hot prospect before our competitors get to them first. Sometimes email can be the biggest killer of deals, because we spend too much time crafting up the perfect email (that nobody bothers to read anyway) instead of just picking up the phone to call and have a quick, productive conversation. I catch myself and people around me typing a laboriously long email and I go “just pick up the bloody phone and call” (yes, I sometimes self-talk  :)). Don’t be known as an artillery gunner guy, “gunna do this, gunna do that”, just get it done. What’s worse than not getting it done quickly? Blaming everyone else around you or circumstances. The blame game reflects poorly on you.

4. Aaaaa….ACTION! – We are paid a fair wage for our work, sales can be extremely rewarding when you get results. In sales, action = results. There are key activities in your job that needs to be done to get results, do it often and do a lot of it! There are no short cuts to success. Of course, between QUALITY and QUANTITY, the right answer is doing both equally well. I see it time and time again, between the two, QUANTITY wins. Once you have the critical mass rolling down the hill then tweak your QUALITY. In the wise words of Mark Zuckerberg, my favorite 28 year old billionaire, “done is better than perfect”, lets get it done!

I hope the above 4 tips will give you a leg up if you are considering making a success in your sales career, would love to hear your winning stories or other traits you think are important in sales.

Photo courtesy of Google Images

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