What’s your plan B when you sell? You do have one when things don’t turn out how you plan, right? There is another way to sell if you find yourself spending too much time implementing your Plan Bs.
Learn from other people’s mistakes.
There’s a better way than doing the work and learning from your mistakes. I had said in one of my programs on becoming more productive that you should be making different mistakes. If you’re making a mistake once then you’re learning. If you make the same mistake again and again then you are missing something.
One of the salespeople had a better idea and she was right. She said you should learn from other people’s mistakes. That way you spare yourself the consequences and still get the benefit of the lesson. I think that working with a mentor is the best way to learn from other people’s mistakes. Good mentors have seen a lot off successes and failures. That’s why they can help you with the questions you need to answer to avoid the failures.
What don’t you know?
What you’ll find in business is that there are numerous right and wrong ways to do things. What you’ll also find is that there are better and worse ways to achieve your objectives. Instead of thinking right and wrong, choose the best way for you to do things. Just remember that what works for someone else might not be the best for you.
That’s where a mentor comes in handy. They know your skillset best and can provide the guidance so you make the best choices and get the best outcomes. It’s not that you won’t try something new. It’s that you want to choose the best way to learn to be successful by tapping into your talents.
Early in my sales career I wanted to reach my sales goals faster. I worked seven days a week. I was single and a family wasn’t a factor. Even though I didn’t have family responsibilities, this was a bad choice and it wasn’t the best for me. Why? Because working seven days a week is a certain way to lead to burnout. When you’re burned out, you may make short-term goals, but you certainly don’t make the long-term ones. I didn’t realize it even though I was tired from working seven days a week.
My mentor knew that I wanted a sales career, not just simply making my sales goals that quarter. He quickly voiced his disapproval when I told him how I was working. He told me no one works seven days a week and it’s a bad idea for me to do that. His good advice helped put me back on track to a much more satisfying way to work and I made my sales goals.
One of the most valuable inputs I got from my mentor was his perspective on business. He helped me with strategy discussions to deal with competition. He knew which competitors were weakest and encouraged me to find prospects where those competitors were doing business. He knew that these prospects would be the easiest for me to sell to.
Imagine my sales cycle had I not had that information. It would have taken me longer to reach my sales goals and it would have been more difficult to sell.
Some people say that you should never have a Plan B because it distracts from Plan A. I say your Plan A should be to get a mentor.