I’m challenging you NOT to have your BEST year ever. Rather, have a GREAT year. A great family year. A great achievement year. A great money year. A great health year.
The secret of “great” is NOT to start with “it.” The secret of “great” is to start with “you.” “IT” is I’m gonna buy a new house this year, and “YOU” is I’m gonna study the science of asking questions. “IT” is I’m gonna get something material, and “YOU” is I’m gonna improve myself. To HAVE great, first you must BE great, and DO great.
Define yourself. In order to be able to have a great year, the first person that you have to come to know, on as deep a level as humanly possible, is you. Personally, I define myself as a father, a grandfather, a friend, a writer, a speaker, an idea person, a happy person, a thinker, a traveler with endless wanderlust, and a lover of fun and fine things. Contrary to what you might think, I’m not a “people person.” I’m a one-on-one person. I get loyalty by giving loyalty. And I seek new knowledge every day.
Have you ever defined yourself? Have you ever thought about who you are? Much less — have you ever written it down?
And so your first challenge is to book a DAILY hour with yourself. Find a comfortable chair, and open your laptop or tablet to Microsoft Word, and define who you think you are. Or better, who do you think you are at the moment, and make all decisions based on the person you want to become. Once you define yourself, you’ll ascertain both where you are and where you want to grow.
I’ll share one other personal insight with you. I also define myself as the “king of sales.” It’s a personal feeling. And a sense of self-confidence that I carry with me wherever I go. When you define yourself, make certain that you include everything that you are great at. In order to have a great year, you have to think of yourself as great. Even if it’s the “greatest salesperson in the company,” or “great dad.” Whatever it is, to be great — or to have great — you have to think great.
In order to have a GREAT year, you have to do great things and take great actions.
Here’s your list:
1. Define yourself. Read and implement the paragraphs above.
2. Develop a sales mission statement. Something that drives you into the sales call, and have an order in hand when you leave.
3. Have a deep belief in the three critical areas of selling. Company, product, and self.
4. Develop greater pride in accomplishment. No bragging, just humble self-pride.
5. You are what you eat. Stop the fat BEFORE it enters.
6. Get rid of one time-waster. I recommend TV, but you make your own decisions.
7. Read a self-help or business book every two months. Six a year.
8. Get your (sales) pipeline full. Double your pipeline and you’ll double your sales.
9. Get your monthly sales quota met by the second week of the month. It’s easy to do, just turn off the TV.
10. Start branding yourself. Become known as a person of value. Build personal reputation.
11. Get up earlier. Start your day with you, not the news.
12. Begin capturing your thoughts and ideas in writing. Every day, immediately as they occur.
13. Give one speech. Join toastmasters and participate.
14. Write one article your customers will read. Something that helps them and brands you.
15. Make sales at breakfast. Have coffee with a customer or prospect at 7am every day.
16. Keep your present customers loyal to you and your company.
17. Double your testimonials. Testimonials can make sales when salespeople (you included) cannot.
18. Double your referrals. Most people ask for referrals. Big mistake. The best way to get a referral is to earn one. The best way to get a referral is to give a referral.
19. Record your sales presentation. If you want to hear the funniest thing you’ve ever heard in your life, record yourself making a sales presentation.
20. Start every morning with attitude. Wake up tomorrow morning and grab an attitude book off your bookshelf, or open your iPad, and read a few pages.
21. Get great at social. Build a great social following, social presence, social brand, and social reputation.
21.5 You’re not alone. Create a mastermind. All salespeople are in the same boat. The Good Ship Lollypop. Unlimited income potential, while sailing in rough (often uncharted) waters. The good news is, you’re not alone. Create a mastermind of non-competing salespeople and leaders to talk about problems, success, and opportunities in common. Don’t live or die by the numbers. Have a support team to give you a positive idea transfusion once a month.
Having a GREAT year is not a matter of doing one thing right — or even making one thing better — it’s a matter or making everything better, so that you can get to GREAT.
Now you have all of the 21.5 elements. Print them out and post them so that you continually remind yourself of all the elements that it takes to have a great year. Having a great year requires both full dedication and constant reminder.
I hope you have a GREAT year.
» Jeffrey Gitomer is the author of “The Sales Bible”, “Customer Satisfaction is Worthless” “Customer Loyalty is Priceless”, “The Little Red Book of Selling”, “The Little Red Book of Sales Answers”, “The Little Black Book of Connections”, “The Little Gold Book of YES! Attitude”, “The Little Green Book of Getting Your Way”, “The Little Platinum Book of Cha-Ching”, “The Little Teal Book of Trust”, “The Little Book of Leadership”, and “Social BOOM!” His website, www.gitomer.com, will lead you to more information about training and seminars, or email him personally at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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