There is nothing in this world as embarrassing as sales meeting when you don’t have your numbers! You might as well be naked! If you sold long enough, you know this feeling. Read on….
As a first year sales rep I never looked forward to the dreaded sales meeting. As always, unit results would be reviewed early on in the meeting and my production, which was severely lacking, would stand out like a sore thumb. The sales meetings were also tough because the unit was not doing well, not to mention that my production “sucked”.
In front of the other sales reps, the regional sales manager, and God, they focused on the results for the month. Quite frankly, it was ugly, I felt as if the world, and everyone in it was looking at me when they read the results.
I don’t have to go much deeper into this story as I think you get the picture. This scene plays out in sales meetings across the globe, and will continue to do so. It may be lessened with ‘virtual’ sales meetings, but the feeling is the same. Poor results, for even a portion of the year, affect you in the form of embarrassment and performance hampering stress.
Motivator? Yes or No?
No one wants to surrender to this condition. Is it a motivator? Can you use this to increase your energy level and effectively change your situation? Your ability to deliver job saving, high-level results can be at risk when you put up your defenses, or even retreat because of this condition.
There are better, more effective ways to be motivated. See Black Sales Journal Getting Motivated – What Motivates You? Just maybe it is one of those items that has a life of its own. It might just be part of the landscape of sales that will always be with us.
Does this act as a motivator? It probably does. Black sales professionals consistently battle with the perception that they will have difficulty in the corporate sales world, and the bright lights of the sales meeting seems to have the effect of amplifying that if they are having some sales difficulty. You cannot only succeed; you can make money and enjoy the spoils of a good job. Don’t let anyone tell you differently. If you are good, you only need to survive the difficult periods.
What Can You Do?
No one wants to be embarrassed by disappointing sales numbers. If you are in sales for a long period of time, it will happen to you and often it is just situational, a matter of timing which will solve itself at some point. No matter whether short or long lived, there are some things that you might want to consider:
- Look Confident – as if you know it is going to change. If your co-employees and management can tell you are embarrassed by your performance, your customers will be able to tell also.
- Body language is important
- Your expressions will make you transparent
- You will live through this…there are others just like you in the room
- Be Productive – I know, this does not solve the pain, but this is the only way to make sure that you won’t have the embarrassment in subsequent sales meetings. Work through this issue.
- Thicken your skin – As best you can, harden your exterior as you are in the most measurable occupation out there and you will continue to be measured by your peers, your management, and yourself.
The Shoe on the Other Foot
To be sure, there are some things that you will not be able to control, and this is one of them. Practice on your ‘poker face’, and recognize this is a ‘place in time’ and with good work ethic and some good luck, things will change.
Think about what happens when the fortunate ones that do have great sales results ‘spike the ball’ in the sales meetings as opposed to taking a nod of the head and accepting praise. We know that this happens, and it can be embarrassing as well. When you do sell remember to act like you have been in the end zone before.
Above all, always be prepared. It is natural to have pride in what you do. If the numbers are not there, it can be a fleeting moment. You will get over any embarrassment and move forward.
Your comments are appreciated. You can reach me at Michael.Parker@Black SalesJournal.com .