If you’re just starting out in your sales career, you’re probably struggling to get things going. If so, take heart. You just need some momentum, and momentum is always easier to perpetuate than initiate.
My friend Marv used to tell a story about being taken to see the steam locomotives pulling out of New York’s Grand Central Station. Though he was only five, Marv still remembers how impressive those engines were.
“Not those sissy diesel engines we have today. These were powerful steam engines.” He would pound on the table to give you a sense of the mighty machines rumbling along the tracks.
But the lesson of his story was this: “You could put a one-inch steel bar across the tracks when the train was starting, and as big and powerful as the locomotive was, it would not be able to move. But let that train get started and put the same steel bar on the tracks a mile out, and that locomotive would slice right through it as if it were made of butter.”
Sales careers work the same way. In the beginning, no matter how powerful you are, it’s a struggle to get over that steel bar. Some of us don’t make it (and end up in jobs where someone else does the prospecting). But those who do make it learn to attract clients—first one here and another there—as the train gets going down the tracks.
If you’re still struggling to get over that steel bar, try remembering these four success tips:
Look for the opportunity in every situation. Setbacks are chances to learn. Failure teaches you what doesn’t work.
Put 100 percent of yourself into what you’re doing. When you’re working, be 100 percent at work. When you’re playing, be 100 percent at play. And when you’re with a client, be 100 percent with that client.