Elite sales performers take responsibility for their success and their failure. Most importantly they don’t make excuses for the way things are. They recognize what they have done well and what they haven’t done well. They internalize these lessons so that they continue to improve. Poor salespeople take all the credit for success and none for failure. This prevents them from growing and learning better ways of selling.
The best sales people take responsibility for failure. They learn from the experience and strive not to repeat the same mistake. They acknowledge where they could have done better and downplay the factors they have no control over. They take responsibility so that they can improve their skills. Poor sales people usually blame outside factors. “The economy is bad.” “Our region isn’t growing.” “It all came down to price and we weren’t lowest.” They blame factors outside their control, never themselves. This creates a cycle where they are helpless and never improve. When a poor sales person finds an excuse, it ensures that they won’t change anything they are doing and their success is left up to fate.
Elite sales performers are not overly modest. They recognize their role in the success and learn from what they did well. This doesn’t mean they don’t give others credit where it is due. It means that they recognize what they did well and take responsibility for their part. This reinforces their strengths and provides a system for success.
No matter what the outcome, we have to take responsibility for what has happened. Don’t become a victim. Instead understand what you can control and what you can’t control. Accept what you can’t control and put all of your energy into what you can control. This will generate successful outcomes. Sell responsibly – no excuses.
- Jim Mattei
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