The entrepreneurial spirit will drive a person to jump from a cliff with nylon cloth, rope and the will to create a parachute on the way down. If you don’t take a leap of faith with your business from time to time, you will never reach your potential and push yourself beyond what you thought possible.
But, how do you know from which cliff to jump?
This is the million-dollar question and you might not get it correct on the first or even 10th try. Abraham Lincoln was defeated for state legislature, failed in business, had a nervous breakdown, was defeated for speaker, Congress and vice president before he finally changed history as the 16th President of the United States. My personal story is filled with failures that I had to endure on my way to realizing my calling. Falling or failing is not a destination; it is simply a bump on the road to your dreams. The falling is not nearly as significant as what you do when you get back up. For most reading this article, your entrepreneurial spirit manifests itself in some form of sales and selling.
Selling and salespeople have gotten a bad name through the years. Why is this? Without sales, no business can survive, let alone thrive. Salespeople deliver the revenue needed to sustain every part of a business. Sales and selling play a part in every interaction we have, both in business and in our personal lives. Individuals must compel themselves and others to do things that lead to desired outcomes. So, in a way we are all salespeople. Sales, just like any other skill, can be improved with training and practice.
Every person who works in sales should consider themselves an entrepreneur. Salespeople will sink or swim based on their own efforts, skills and talents. Effort should be a given. If you are not putting in the required effort to succeed, no article in this or any magazine will help you. You need to decide whether or not a job in sales is for you.
So, let’s assume that everyone who continues reading has made the decision to put in the effort. Skills and talent, on the other hand, require more than just the will to succeed. Some salespeople are born with a natural talent while the rest of us have to work to develop the skills a career in sales require. There are numerous ways to learn sales skills. Some dealerships have extremely in-depth training and mentoring programs to develop their people. Others just toss salespeople to the wolves and see who survives.
If you are lucky enough to work at a dealership that offers great training and mentoring programs, take advantage and absolutely devote yourself to your development. If you are not lucky enough to be in this situation, you must make a decision to invest in yourself and take the reins and responsibility for your development. There are plenty of resources available to you. Every business owner invests in the tools needed for their business to succeed. As a sales entrepreneur, you will need to do the same. If you don’t feel an investment into yourself is worth it, no one else will either.
You don’t have to reinvent the wheel, or anything else for that matter. There are plenty who have already done it and are doing it now. Look around at those who are achieving what you want and learn from them. Watch the processes and practices of the best in your field and others. Most of those who are successful have enjoyed help from others along the way and will happily provide that to others. Find a mentor or mentors. Start reading, or listening, to books and podcasts. Take your development seriously. If you are not getting better, you are getting worse. The world will not wait for you. It will continue to move forward. It is up to you not to get left behind.
As you work toward and reach your goals, remember to give back and help others to reach theirs. Zig Zigler said it best, “You can get everything in life you want, if you will just help enough other people get what they want.” To learn more about helping others on their path to development and enjoying a happy and success-filled life, I suggest the book The Go-Giver by Bob Burg and John D Mann. Please email me at the address above and let me know who has helped you and how you help others get what they want.