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Business Gets Personal

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Hello, all of you significant sales people out in the world. Do you realize that nothing ever happens until something is sold? We are not just trying to sell something because we want to make a living. After all, we shouldn’t be ashamed of earning a profit. We shouldn’t be ashamed of our sense of responsibility to pay the bills that we ourselves create. 

Much of the information in this month’s article comes from Jack and Garry Kinder out of Dallas, Texas. They are legendary brothers in the life insurance and financial planning arena in America, who have authored a book called 21st Century Positioning, Proven Selling Precepts. It starts out with forming self-improvement habits, including a quote by Grenville Kleiser. 

“You set your destiny by what you make of yourself. Be an earnest student of yourself.  Learn by frequent self-examination to appraise and to improve your attitudes, aspirations and habits.” 

When you wake up in the morning, are you going to be an asset to this earth or are you going to be a liability to this earth? What are you going to leave behind? What attitude do you have, and is it actually worth catching? If you’re alone in your car or at your desk, say these words:

“Every day, in every way, I get a little better.” 

Are you genuinely enthusiastic about what it is that you do? Are you excited about what you sell? If the answer is no, you need to stop and self-evaluate. What on earth are you doing in your career if you don’t feel like you can make a significant impact? It has got to be about more than just the money. That is a terrible way to live, but so many people do it every day. 

Someone once said that the biggest room in the world is the room for self-improvement.  The effective salesperson is constantly improving in every area. We realize becoming a standout performer, as a rule, is just not a short-haul proposition. Building an outstanding career in selling is a long-term operation. When an archer misses a mark, he or she turns and looks for the fault. Failure to hit the bull’s eye is never the fault of the target. 

Like the archer, to improve your aim you must improve yourself. You must be willing to pay a price for self-improvement. Greatness in selling is never something conferred, it’s something achieved. It’s not something given, it’s something earned. It’s not an accident of birth. It’s an attitude of quality, a dimension, an outlook, a way of life that’s open to anyone who’s willing to pay the price. 

Agent of change

Channing Pollock once wrote, “We should be content with what we have, but never with what we are.” The interesting piece here is everyone wants to “improve.” They want to improve their spouses, their children, their company, their country. In the process, we neglect to improve the one person we can most readily and quickly impact. And who is that? You’ve got it: yourself.

We’re willing to change jobs, locations and even industries. Only rarely do we change ourselves. All personal development in the long run is just that — personal. For me, all business is personal, too. I’m an entrepreneur. I own an insurance and financial services practice. There are three things that I consider myself an expert in: selling, generating referrals and overcoming adversity. I didn’t choose to become an expert in overcoming adversity, but I live just outside of New Orleans, and Hurricane Katrina did force me to make some choices that ultimately shaped me into an adversity expert. 

What I want you to get from this is that all business is personal. Your clients can buy the products or services you sell from just about any other vendor. What they can’t get anywhere else is you. Your passion, your heart, your attitude, your demeanor — all these things have to make the difference. When your clients are around you, do they feel a positive vibe, a chemistry that they may not even be able to explain? They should.

You want your clients to wonder, what is it about him/her? Why is it that whenever I get around him/her I feel better? That magnetism is available inside of each one of you, but it is your responsibility to develop it. That is usually not a trait you’re born with, by the way. It is a learned habit. 

To learn more, stay tuned: In May, I will continue this concept about how to magnetize your business, raise your sales and keep customers for life.

For more from Marvin Leblanc, see:

No Leader is Without Weaknesses

How to Get Out of Life’s Sand Bunkers

5 Sales and Leadership Lessons from Edison