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Five Drivers of Success

April 17, 2017



suc·cess noun

  1. the accomplishment of an aim or purpose.
  2. the attainment of popularity or profit. 

Norman Hamilton - Being GR8Most of us want to be successful. Yet as you can see from above there are different definitions of success. For some it is an accomplishment. For others, it is popularity. Still others link success to making money. If you are in sales, success means one of your customers walks away owning the goods you offered.

None of us like to be sold anything. Yet we all love to buy things. When was the last time you told a friend, “We went shopping this weekend, and this salesperson sold us outdoor furniture?" Of course not, what you are more likely to say is, “We went shopping this weekend and we bought this beautiful furniture for our outdoor room.” Those are two different experiences. One will be enjoyed for years and years. And one could lead to buyer’s remorse.

In both cases, you were successful as you made a sale. Yet if they bought something from you as opposed to being sold something, you will be more successful – have more customers and make more money. As a salesperson how do you make sure that your customers bought something from you and weren’t sold something by you?

Zig Ziglar said, “If you help enough people get what they want, you will get what you want.” In other words, put other people’s interests before your own, and let them know you are only there to help and not to make a sale. Zig also said, “Stop selling and start helping.” If you do that, you will be successful.

The question I always had for my direct mangers was how do I let people know I am here to help them? In my career, I got many answers. It wasn’t until one of my mentors told me about the Five Drivers of Success developed by Dale Carnegie that it all clicked and helped me to help others. Then I started to have what people call success in sales.

Dale Carnegie believed and taught millions of people worldwide that success is built around five interrelated areas: Self confidence, people skills, communication skills, leadership skills and the ability to improve our attitude while we reduce stress.

Most employers today recognize the importance of these skills and attitudes when examining the competitive marketplace and the reality of doing more, better, faster and with fewer resources than the competition. Plus, they will pay top dollar for anyone who exhibits them in every interaction with customers. Let’s look at these Five Drivers in a little more detail and how they relate to you.

  1. Greater Self-Confidence. In a world where risk, challenge, competition and change are intertwined, self-confidence is indispensable. You need to constantly look for ways to build your confidence and stretch out of your comfort zone. Stretching yourself beyond where you are comfortable is vital because this is where your greatest opportunities are waiting. Growth happens when you get out of your comfort zone.
  2. Strong People Skills. People skills are essential for sales professional. You need to focus on the necessary skills to make a positive impression on others. You need to learn how to win enthusiastic cooperation instead of compliance, turn a “no” into a “yes," and be diplomatic under pressure.
  3. Enhanced Communication Skills. In every situation, you should look for opportunities to build and reinforce the skills you need to communicate powerfully and effectively. These opportunities should be varied, challenging and enjoyable. You should look to improve your ability to think on your feet and express your thoughts, ideas and intuitions. Whether in front of a large group, a small meeting or one-on-one, how you package and present yourself will improve from learning how to be more effective, convincing and interesting. Volunteer for opportunities to present or represent for your company.
  4. Develop Leadership Skills. An effective sales leader inspires other team members to a higher level of performance. To become a sales leader, you need to develop the skills required to be more flexible, energetic, open and approachable. With enhanced leadership skills, you enable yourself to gain enthusiastic cooperation from others, enabling you to be more productive with your customers, which will lead to more sales.
  5. Reduce Stress and Improve Our Attitude. The ability to face challenging situations with a constructive attitude is often the determining factor in achieving success or losing a sale. To give your best, you need to manage stress so that you can maintain an optimistic approach to any challenges that come your way. By learning to set clear, specific goals, avoiding procrastination and dealing effectively with problems, we become more focused and directed while maintaining a positive mental attitude.

My suggestion is to rate yourself in each one of these areas on a scale of 1 to 10. Look at the area where you want to improve. Talk with your direct manager and ask for their help. Go online and look for books, seminars or training that can help you in the area(s) you most want to improve. And stay tuned to this blog as over the next few months we will look at ways to improve in each of these areas. Feel free to reach out to me with any questions or comments. Or if you would like a Peak Performance Profile for yourself or your company, I will be glad to help. See you soon and remember to always strive to BGR8.

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