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In sales, business, and life, you go through highs and lows. The highs are thrilling but that eventually ends and you fall into a slump. That’s why I try not getting too emotionally high or low. Practice mindfulness to: stay in the moment, control what you can, and focus on the next play. It takes discipline (through practice) to adhere to this philosophy, but mindfulness allows us to perform at our highest levels.
We all go through slumps. The difference between the good and great performers is how you get out of slumps. Do you pout and feel sorry for yourself? Or do you keep fighting until you get yourself out?
In basketball, the easiest way to get out of a shooting slump is to get an easy basket, like a layup. This is because you gain confidence after you see the ball go through the hoop. Accomplishing something simple slowly builds your confidence back and reminds you that you got this.
Looking at this idea through our business and professional lives; do not take your foundation for granted. We are all guilty of focusing on new business development that we sometimes forget about our existing customer base. A strong customer base, who does repeat business, is the foundation of every successful business. Once you have this, you can build on your foundation organically, through multiple sales channels, backed up by referrals and references.
That’s why your best leads are the ones you already have.
One of my proudest career achievements has been to achieve top sales volume (of a Mid-Sized International Company) three years in a row, and having the top sales volume the last four out of five years.
What I love about sales is that you can earn as much as you want (if you work for it). However, it’s nice to have a consistent paycheck when you are supporting a family. You achieve consistency by keeping your existing customer base, your best leads, happy by providing the highest quality service.
My sales volume started taking off after I established ‘product standards’ with my largest clients. It made the buying process easy — they get products they want (based on clearly defined criteria) and take advantage of volume discounts.
It took years of working my ass off to develop the right relationships, anticipate customer needs, and provide high quality service. I look at every client lunch, meeting, and site-visit like a deposit into an investment. The more deposits you make, the bigger your return on investment.
The time to start developing new business is after you are able to generate repeatable sales, from the leads you already have.
That also means don’t ever take your customer base for granted. Don’t forget that your customers pay your bills. Commit to understanding their motivations, anticipating their needs ahead of time, and thanking them for their business.