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Sandler Training | Chicago & Northbrook, IL

If you've been in sales for more than five minutes, you've probably had someone tell you that if you want to succeed in sales, set goals. I'm not here to sell you on goal-setting. I assume you know the importance of setting goals, but the problem is when people set goals they focus on the “what”.

Think of there being three parts to goal-setting: the What, the Why, and the How.

The What is the goal itself. This could be “I want to open five new accounts.” It could be “I want to lose ten pounds.” It could be “I want to increase my margin by 20% on my current accounts”

For most people that's intellectual. It's not emotional enough. The missing link is the “why.” For most people, the why is the compelling reason why it’s important. Why is it important that someone loses ten pounds. Why is it important that they open those accounts. I've even seen people say “okay here's my goal, I want to run the Chicago Marathon.” A lot of people have that. If someone's going to go from being a semi runner or a non-runner to running a marathon, and they don't have a compelling “why” that's going to drive them, they're not going to do it.

With your goals, (opening five accounts for example) I would suggest you focus on the why. If you get a compelling why and you will do the tough things to get to the “What.” The problem is, if you have an aggressive goal, you're going to stretch yourself out of your comfort zone. To get to that place you need a motivation more than just the goal. That's where the “Why” comes in. If the “How” is your runners log, you want ‘X’ number of miles per week over a specific number of weeks, and in October when the Chicago Marathon is up you'll be able to run it. Not only that, here's the diet you should follow so you have a very clear cookbook, but when it's March in Chicago and it's sleeting out, with 30 mile per hour winds, and your runners log says you've got to run today to stay on track and you don’t have a strong enough “why”, you're not going to
push yourself to do that activity.

In Sales, if you need to make so many dials a day or ask for so many referrals or you have to do some networking or things you don’t typically like doing, you need a strong enough “Why” or you're not going to push through the call reluctance or the discomfort in doing that activity.

Look at your goals and think about defining a compelling reason for achieving them. What are your Whys?


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