Did you ever play football on the wet grass when you were young? You would try to run a tight pattern but you just end up slipping with your regular shoes. Then a kid shows up with cleats. Game over! The cleats were the tool the other kids didn’t have, and the kid with the cleats won.
This is why we chase tools — to give us an edge. But today, everyone is wearing cleats, and shoulder pads, and a mouth guard, and a helmet.
Critical Sales Tools
We have more sales tools than ever before:
- stationary tools: pens and pencils, notepads and paper, a stapler, sharpies, paper clips, envelopes, folders
- social tools: business cards, a cell phone, breath mints, credit cards, golf membership, people skills, phone skills
- networking tools: open-ended questions, exit statements, value statements, mental scripts, rapport-building techniques
- presentation tools: spreadsheets, Microsoft PowerPoint, laptop computer, LCD projector, extension cords, presentation skills, sensory perception skills.
- sales tools: persuasive selling techniques, closing techniques, techniques for overcoming objections
Despite having all these tools, the business development manager is finding it challenging to close a deal. So let’s simplify. Here are sales tools you can count on, starting tomorrow, and you do not have to pay for it; you just have to draw on it.
Love Your Work
You just have to love what you do! Why? Because, in reality, life is primarily sleep and work.
Don’t believe it? The US Department of Labor reports that the average American spends 8 hours and 29 minutes sleeping everyday. If you sleep for approximately 8 1/2 hours a day, what do you do with the rest of your day?
You work! Next to sleeping, the average American spends 7-8 hours working everyday. So there you have it. Sixteen of 24 hours in a day are given to sleep and work. That leaves the other eight hours to whatever you wish and, unfortunately, the average American watches 3 hours and 26 minutes of television everyday.
Okay, the point is clear. In a year, you sleep for about four months, you work for about four months, and you get four months more to do as you please, providing you are sleeping well and everything is well at work.
So, what if you do not like your job? You are not alone. Opinion polls find that more than half of American employees dislike significant aspects of their jobs and equate work with effort and struggle.
A quirky old saying goes like this: “You gotta do a check up from the neck up to avoid a bad attitude and stinkin’ thinkin’!”
If you are working in business development and you are not enjoying it, you must change your outlook, your attitude, and your perception. It is the quickest-working solution because the change is up to you.
It is not the easiest answer, but it is a powerful one. Changing your attitude is not about faking it. It is about changing the way you look at things. You do not have to love your job. But you can find meaning in your work, if you are able to put it in perspective in terms of what it does for you.
If you are selling sheet metal, and hating it, then try seeing it this way:
- Everybody has to work.
- You are alive and healthy and a contributing part of society.
- Your bills are being paid.
- You are learning about what you do not want to do.
- You are encouraged to work towards what you really want to do.
- You can leave this job whenever you want.
You have complete power over the way you think and thinking negatively will only have you digging your own grave in no time. Instead, take control of how you view what you do. If you do not love your job, then find a job you love. If you can’t leave your job, then learn to view your job in the right perspective. Among your business development tools, this is the one that will give you a competitive sales advantage.