Last week, I had a meeting with a young salesperson. She was complaining that her sales for the month were poor and that her boss was contemplating the idea of removing her from the team. She was worried.
Before pointing fingers, I started asking her questions.
The first question I asked her was the reason why her sales were poor.
She blamed a lot of things; the economy, unqualified customers, her teammates, her company, etc.
All these reasons sounded too familiar to me, as an entrepreneur and business leader, I have heard of these excuses a million times, they are all too familiar.
I listened to her as she went on and on complaining about how the conditions were not right to help her succeed and how the world was unfair.
I patiently listened looking forward to when she’d also include herself as a reason for her failure.
If you are a salesperson, you have to know that the buck begins and stops with you. It’s not about the economy, it’s not about your boss, it’s not about your company, it’s all you. Most people tend to celebrate when they get a good month but want to shift blame when they experience a bad month.
The same way you take credit when things go well is the same way you should take credit when things go bad. It’s all you.
When I tell most people this, they often highlight that they don’t make policies or control the economy which is true; But they tend to forget that they control whether or not they meet their targets in terms of the clients they call or the meetings they do.
Instead of focusing on the actual things we can control, it’s the nurture of humans to want to shift blame to external factors and conditions that we have no control over.
Now that you understand that the buck starts and end with you, I can now highlight the biggest reason you are not making enough sales; Pipeline Growth.
Your pipeline is simply the number of people you are expecting to buy your product or service.
A lot of salespeople undervalue the importance of investing in growing your pipeline yet it’s one of the most important activities for any salesperson.
I often push my salespeople to prospect on a daily basis.
I want you to think of the last time you went into a sales slump; What did you do? Did you just wait for things to start working on their own or you went for broke and started going all-out making cold calls and looking for new clients?
If you want more sales, it’s important to invest in prospecting, growing your pipeline, and getting as many people as possible to consider buying your product or service.
I often meet salespeople who brag that they are only following up on 6 or 7 people. In a country of 12 million people, how can one expect to hit the target if they are only following up on 6 or 7 people, it’s a joke!
To conclude, you might be asking how one can grow their pipeline. Although there are many methods to use, one method I’ve relied on is asking.
You’d be surprised how many people would introduce you to someone if you’d just ask.
The mistake a lot of us salespeople make is that we never ask for referrals. We wait until a client things about us. We are not proactive with the process.
The next time you see a happy client just ask them if they know someone who might benefit from your products or services, you’d be surprised at the amount of new contacts you can generate from this method alone.
PS. I will be having a Sales Seminar on the 4th of June 2022 at Sabre Business World. Visit this page to learn more.