Hi this is Casha and I am one of the sales and leadership coaches with Emerge Sales Training. We have free training available for you to make closing sales an enjoyable process for you and your customers, or to make recruiting an enjoyable process for you and your potential business builder. Sign up at emergesalestraining.com/freetraining
I’m excited to be back with you today because today I’m talking about failure. You’re probably thinking “Why is she excited to talk about that?” and I know it sounds like a total Debbie Downer of a topic, especially since one of our core values is to always talk about our wins, but I hope you’ll stick around to hear how failure could actually be your greatest success.
Recently I pulled out one of my favorite books The Greatest Salesman in the World by Og Mandino, and I make a point to read every year. It’s a super easy read, most could probably read it cover to cover in one day, it only took me about 90 minutes.
But for those of you that have not read this book you might be wondering what’s so great about this 111 page book that I read it every year? It’s kind of like that saying goes, “big things come in small packages”, because every page is packed with principles that will not only change your business, they might change your life too. So I want to read an excerpt to kick us off….
“Prove to yourself that you can endure the life of a salesman for it is not an easy lot you have chosen. Truly many time have you heard me say that the rewards are great if one succeeds but the rewards are only great because so few succeed. Mamy succumb to despair and fail without realizing that they already possess all the tools needed to acquire great wealth. Many others face each obstacle in their path with fear and doubt and consider them as enemies when, in truth, these obstructions are friends and helpers. Obstacles are necessary for success because in selling, as in all careers of importance, victory comes only after many struggles and countless defeats. Yet each struggle, each defeat sharpens your skills and strengths, your courage and our endurance, your ability and your confidence and thus each obstacle is a comrade-in-arms forcing you to become better or quit. Each rebuff is an opportunity to move forward; turn away from them, avoid them, and you throw away your future. …Failure will never overtake you if your determination to succeed is strong enough.”
I have every line of this passage underlined in my book because what stood out to me, this thought of embracing failure in order to be successful. I think it would be fair to say that most of us have a fear of failure, so what do we do to make sure we’re not failures? How do we take our failures and turn them into our success? No two people will define success in the same way, but failure is always the same no matter what- inability to reach one’s goals, whatever they might be. But failures are necessary for success.
The book goes on to outline 10 principles of salesmanship and a philosophy for success, and while I’d love to do a dramatic reading and cover all 10, we don’t have time for that today. Plus, you really should get your own copy (haha), so I want to outline 5 principles on how to not be a failure.
#1 Lead from Love
The Beatles were onto something when they said all you need is love. This one is simple. Focus on impact before the outcome. If you lead from love and making a positive impact on the people you encounter, the income will come. Pro tip here, when you meet with someone, sit down to have an appointment, get ready to make phone calls and tell yourself “I love this person.”
#2 Form good habits
We are slaves to our habits. Routines and patterns shape every aspect of our life, but the key to success is to be slaves to the good habits and not the bad ones. Every habit works the same way… we have a trigger, something that sets a routine off and a sequence of steps that lead us to a specific reward. That’s why habits exist, because we want the reward. So if the key is to success is to form good habits, how to we kick the bad ones? It’s true, old habits die hard, but studies have shown that we can change our habits. How? By replacing bad habits with good ones. Charles Duhigg, the author of The Power of Habit outlines a few keys on how to change bad habits. Identify the habit you want to change, recognize the trigger that sets the routine in motion, determine the reward you’re seeking.
#3 Don’t get wrapped up in your emotions
I want you to take a moment and think about who FEELS better at the end of the day, the person who allows feelings to dictate how their day goes or the person who does what they need to get done despite how they might be feeling in that moment? Who accomplishes more? Who is more likely to reach their goals be successful, and less likely to be a failure. It shouldn’t be any surprise, it’s the the do-er. Performance is driven by behavior, behavior is driven by emotions, and emotions are driven by thoughts.
Og Mandino says “weak is he who permits his thoughts to control his actions; strong is he who forces his actions to control his thoughts.” Our emotions are constantly changing- moment to moment, day to day, week to week and so on and unless our emotions are right, then it’s likely to go to waste. So when you find yourself busy feeling instead of doing, identify the thought that is holding you back from taking action, write down what impact this is having on your business, your customers, or your team. Reframe the thought in a positive light and write down what impact taking action would have on your business, your customer, or your team. Determine one action step you can take to getting the wheels in motion towards doing and how you will feel once you’ve done it.
#4 Take action
More truths from Og Mandino, when he says “My dreams are worthless, my plans are dust, my goals are impossible. All are of no value unless they are followed by action.” Sometimes we get wrapped up in doing the perfect thing or doing it the perfect way, but as Tasha has said, perfect can often be the enemy of good enough and something is always better than nothing.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed or stuck on the merry-go-round going nowhere. Stop. Take a few minutes to write down just 3 actions you can take today that will help you move toward executing your plan, meeting your goals, and fulfilling your dreams and then ACT NOW. Procrastination is born from fear and is what can easily lead to a path of failure, instead, kill your fear with action because success is born from action.
#5 Don’t quit Persist until you succeed
We must fail often to succeed once because success doesn’t come at the beginning. The prize is always at the finish line and often times we don’t know how many steps are between where we start and where we finish. You will encounter obstacles and setbacks along the way, but keep going. Try, try, and then try again. Never feel shame for trying and failing for he who has never failed is he who has never tried. Success is always waiting at the end so run the race to win. Don’t quit, instead persist, and when you’re tired or it feels like too much, walk. Sometimes all we can do is take one step at a time, but even then, we’re moving forward. Persist knowing that with each step you are increasing your chances for success.
I hope these 5 principles will help you to be more successful and I hope that if don’t already own this book you’ll pick up a copy. If you do, I’d love to hear your thoughts on it so feel free to send me an email at Casha@emergesalestraining.com.
To quote one of the readers from the Success Motivation Institute, “No one who follows these principles will ever fail as a salesman, and no one will ever be truly great without them.”
Thank you so much for reading. To sign up for one of our free trainings on closing or recruiting, go to emergesalestraining.com/freetraining.