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PROSALESGUY - Surviving 2020 As A Salesperson

    • 194 posts
    April 16, 2020 3:33 PM PDT

     

    Surviving 2020 as a Salesperson is the current focus of our sales training clients.   Individual B2B and B2C Salespeople are all dealing with massive change right now.  Plans laid at the start of the year are being re-strategized as we’re facing a business environment never dealt with before.  Salespeople need positive ways to release and cope with anxiety, frustration and the occasional meltdown day.  What can you do to be productive for the balance of this year?  Start with reading this post on Surviving 2020 as a Salesperson.

    We all need to take a reality check and face facts.  Thousands of businesses are closed and many of the ones still open are reducing, if not freezing budgets in order to stay alive.  Can we really blame them?  Here’s the first thing we need to do.

    Accept that this will not be over in the next four weeks  

    Develop the mindset that you may be working from home for the next 8-12 weeks.  Maybe you’ll be pleasantly surprised and you and your buyers will be back at the office sooner.  Being the eternal optimist, I was selling myself on the notion that we’d be back to normal by the end of May.    When the reality of the situation set in, I had to fight strong emotions that caused me to ask “How could this have happened?  Who’s responsible for this?”  Mental energy devoted to those thoughts is wasted effort and quicksand that will do nothing but pull you under.  Accept the truth – we are in this for the long haul and 2020 will be a character-building year.

     

    Stay positive and fake it if you’re not

    The phrase fake it until you make it can often be a great way of selling the most important person in the world – you.  You need to put a smile on your face and boost clients who need the extra lift on bad days.  Develop the right perspective and get your head on straight.  Does this suck?  It depends on what you compare it to.  Think of the people who’ve lost loved ones and couldn’t even be in the hospital to say goodbye, attend a funeral or give a hug to a family member.  How about our health care workers who are placing themselves in jeopardy every day and isolating from their families at night by simply going to work to do their job?  As Salespeople, we have nothing to complain about in comparison.

     

    Fight call reluctance

    It can be easy to procrastinate when working from home, especially if you’re now being a teacher to your kids or taking care of your aging parents dealing with their own fears and anxieties.  Many Salespeople are finding attainability to buyers is at an all-time high right now as they are working from home.  Of course, that depends on the nature of their business.  Some decision-makers have never been busier with increased workloads and priorities that are changing daily.  Typical bureaucracy and the time required to get decisions made in many cases have been greatly reduced if not eliminated.

     

    Develop a self-disciplined routine every day

    In this sense, I’ve been lucky to have been self-employed for the past 8 years.  Working from home and having structure has been one of the most necessary ingredients for our success.  Wake up on time, don’t sleep in like a teenager, get ready for the office and get to the area designated as a workspace.  Don’t get distracted with unnecessary social media.  Save Facebook for evenings and breaks.  Most definitely, devote 30 minutes per day to LinkedIn.  Get your profile to All-Star Status and follow these steps for our previous post – Emergency Sales Strategies for the Next 90 Days.

     

    Ask the Right Questions of Your Buyers

    Surviving 2020 as a Salesperson requires you to recognize that the new currency with clients is empathy, creativity and the ability to respond quickly.  In many categories, it’s feast or famine with very little middle ground.  Other than take-out or home delivery, the restaurant industry has been decimated.  In other areas of foodservice, some companies will probably have the best year on record.  Pitching your clients on why they should buy your product at any time without asking the right questions in advance is a bad sales technique.  Right now, doing it can literally destroy a relationship.   Consider these questions:

    How is your company currently dealing with the situation?

    Have you regrettably been forced to let go of people or reduced operating hours or work weeks for remaining staff? 

    Are you taking advantage of government relief programs?

    Beyond the obvious, what’s the biggest challenge you’re currently facing?

    What are you learning from this that you will be applying or changing in the future?

    In many cases, silver linings are appearing from dark financial clouds and new ways of doing business are emerging.  Don’t forget the most obvious question…

    Is there anything I can do to help you?

     

    Take care of yourself and invest in you

    Fight the urge to self-medicate and over-indulge.  This is not a holiday.  This is you putting a full day’s work in at home.  Watch the news no more than once per day.  Maybe even avoid it entirely for a few days.  Do you really think things will change in the next 48 hours?  Read a great sales book for 1 hour per day.  Take a sales training course to refresh your skills and learn new ones.

    Take your dog or your family for a daily walk.   Workout at home.  Find an online home fitness course.  Understand that social distancing is a physical term.  It doesn’t mean being socially distant.  Stay in touch with your Sales Manager and fellow Salespeople that were part of your social circle at work.

     

    Embrace web-conferencing and connect with clients face to face via technology 

    Let me share some facts with you based on personal experience.  Ordinarily, I would keep this information confidential, however, I think it’s important for you to know this – especially now.

    I’m a self-employed Sales Trainer, Sales Coach and Consultant.  We started our business 8 years ago as a 100% pure start-up – not a franchise.    I’m our company’s only Salesperson and Sales Trainer.  My wife is responsible for our administration and the other essential things that I’m not good at.  We make a great team.

    After assisting over 70 clients, both large and small, 95% of our client base never met me face to face in person before signing a proposal to provide our services.  Some of them now exceed a $100,000 total investment.  We’ve used web conferencing from the start of the sales cycle and deliver all of our training and consultation the same way.

    That proves it can be done.

    We are entering an exciting time in business.  That’s if you choose to view it that way.  The best way to explain it is called a paradigm shift.  It’s defined as an important change that happens when the usual way of thinking about or doing something is replaced by a new and different way.

    Opportunity is knocking on your door.  Are you there to answer it?

    As always, I’m here to help or answer any questions you leave in the comments section below.

     

    Stay safe everyone.  Thanks!

    Dave Warawa

    Author of Shut Up!  Stop Talking and Start Making Money - available in paperback and Kindle on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca