Thursday, August 1, 2013

Create Intentional Habits And Get The Best Out Of You

              Create Intentional Habits And Get the Best Out of You

I often chuckle when reminded of an independent financial advisor, Lenny who referred to his business efforts as hunting for the biggest bear in the woods. He spent a great deal of time tracking down the largest critter in the land and every now and then bagged the grand trophy, but when his shot failed him, he became fearful of surviving leaner times. Lenny frequently ignored the opportunity to gather in the smaller but bountiful resources that would sustain him through the harshest times and allow him to thrive when that champion trophy was hibernating.      

What matters most in the world of sales? That’s easy, generating sales and reaping the rewards of the commission. Is that happening as often as you would like? Are you performing at your optimum level? Are you sitting around waiting for that big ol bear to jump out of the woods?

Everyone knows the key to obtaining clients - place phone in hand and dial, dial, dial, contact people who may have never heard of you, stimulate their interests in your product and the potential benefits for them, cultivate and maintain a trusting relationship and seal the agreement. Easy peezy, right?
Not so much; for many in the sales arena these behaviors are difficult to replicate on a consistent basis. There are ever- present worries, distractions and demands upon time and emotions. The dread of cold calling, the personal rewards of building and sustaining meaningful client relationships versus the desire and demand for high achievement and big rewards can distract many professionals. 

The key to replicable success is having a balance between structured activity and the formulation and maintenance of trusting relationships. The value of making calls, scheduling meetings and acquiring the client is obvious and an absolute to success. The value of building quality professional relationships is clear, but the critical steps are often not adhered to. 

Structured activity is easy for some. It can be quite challenging for others, especially for those who are working for themselves or have the added pressure of  generating commissions. Many professionals are impacted by the pressures of having to structure their activity when business isn’t flowing as planned. Worry and anxiety frequently appear and can derail focus and intention for brief and even extended periods of time. When this happens we are much more likely to lose sight of our routine and experience increased stress.

During these times, I urge action over inertia. Start with small routines that can lead back to focused and structured activity. Make a commitment to develop habits that disrupt self-defeating behaviors, such as:

·    Exercising for 10- 15 minutes before going into the office or at the office. This can increase energy and concentration 
·    Develop a plan of action for your day the night before (identify 1-5 clients you want to call in the a.m.).
·     Get to the office 10 minutes earlier than usual, pick up the phone and dial as soon as you sit down at your desk (this limits the time you have to talk yourself out of the call).
·     Avoid checking voice mail and leave your computer off until you make that first call.
·     Alternate difficult tasks with easier or more enjoyable ones.
·     Write down a daily inventory of your strengths (know what you do well and know how to communicate that), goals and successes,
·     Set a deadline for project completion.
·     Ask for help when you need it.

Effective follow through, mindful activity, time management, skillful communication are critical keys to success.

Working with a coach offers an opportunity to build focused intentional routines that can lead to successful outcomes more consistently. This process focuses on maximizing strengths, minimizing self-defeating behaviors, developing strong habits that sustain success and maintaining consistent intentional and proactive activity.

Happy Hunting!

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