Sorry, Practice Doesn’t Make Perfect

Practice doesn’t make perfect,

only practice of perfection makes perfect.

–Anonymous

This is one of my favorite sayings, and I love to use it during training or during a speaking event. I ask the audience how many people think that practice makes perfect, and you should see the hands shoot up! Everyone has heard this saying since they were kids, and most people believe it is true. And you should see the look on their faces when I tell them it’s not.

As they slowly put their hands down, I tell them that practice only makes permanent. If you practice something wrong – a golf swing, a sales rebuttal, etc. – you’re going to get really good at doing it wrong. In fact, it will be easy for you to be bad at something automatically, you won’t even have to think about it!

Unfortunately, whenever I go into a company and listen to their pitch, or the way they handle objections, or open their calls, I hear it. Many sales teams, and sales reps, are practicing poor selling techniques over and over again. And because they get into the same situations over and over again, they just keep saying and practicing the poor techniques.

And this is why they don’t see the consistent results they want. Think about it: If your prospect tells you at the end of your demo that they need to talk to their partner or spouse before they can make a decision, the right response isn’t, “Okay, when do you think I can call you back?” That is practicing a poor selling skill, and the result is a lot of calls backs and chasing unqualified leads.

The proper response – and the way to practice perfection in this instance – is to isolate this stall by saying, “I understand and you should speak with them. And if, after you do, they tell you to do what you think is best, then based on what we’ve just gone over, what would you tend to do?”

By isolating this stall – rather than buying into it – you’ll soon learn that any answer other than, “I’d do it,” means that asking their so-called partner or spouse isn’t the real objection. There is something else holding them back, and until you uncover and deal with that first, then you are just going to get stalled by this objection over and over again.

Practicing poor selling skills has another danger as well. It also ingrains poor techniques and turns them into habits. And habits are very hard to break. In fact, when teaching a team new and better selling techniques, one of the biggest challenges is getting them to first “un-learn” their old, ineffective habits. While they may do well in the first week or two with the new approach I teach, soon, if they’re not diligent, they can drift back to their old habits and poor skills.

That’s why constant, ongoing work and commitment is required in the first 90 days to make sure they learn and adopt the new habit of a best practice technique.

The good news is that by concentrating on practicing perfection, you’ll not only get better results – and what better reinforcement is there? – but you’ll also develop better habits. Soon, if you really stay focused and keep practicing your new techniques, it will be easy for you to succeed in the selling situations and objections you get into over and over again. And then soon, it will be like you to do things well and become a top producer.

And that’s when selling become easy, and your career becomes much more rewarding.

Dealing Successfully With Gatekeepers

Every month, I get emails from my readers asking me how to deal with gatekeepers. They tell me the most frustrating part of prospecting is actually getting through to the decision maker. They get interrogating questions like:

“Will he know what this call is about?”

And

“Is she expecting your call?”

And

“Have you spoken to him before?”

These and other objections frustrate sales reps to the point of them developing some serious call reluctance. I’m sure you know what I mean…

Don’t you wish that you, and your team, had a proven approach that actually works?

There is, and here are the basics of it:

  1. First of all, be super polite to the receptionist as she gets sales calls every day! Believe me, a receptionist knows a sales rep almost the moment they open their mouth. And one of the surest “tells” is that most sales reps are demanding and borderline rude. So the first thing to do is to be polite. Use “please” and “thank you” a lot, and treat the receptionist like a person – not an obstacle to be overcome.
  2. Don’t pitch the gatekeeper! This is fundamental error number one, and too many sales reps are still making it. To start with, the receptionist doesn’t care what you are selling or how good it is. Instead, her/his job is to get you to the right person. Recognize that and get good at it.
  3. Give an instructional statement. Receptionists take a lot of direction and are most comfortable when they don’t have to make decisions about calls. Instead, they are there to route them. Learn how, and you’ll get a lot further.
  4. Be prepared for push back with a good script. Because you already know what’s coming, why not be prepared to deal with it successfully? Having a proven script for this part of your call (every part, actually!) is the make or break of being successful with it.

So here is the script you need that incorporates all of the above. Don’t take my word for it, rather, use it and see for yourself how much more successful you’ll be:

“Hi may I speak with {first name of prospect} please?

Receptionist: “May I tell him/her who is calling?”

“Yes please. Please tell him/her that ________ ________ is holding please.”

If you use this just as it is (using “please” three times), you will be put through an astounding 60%+ of the time without any additional screening!

Don’t believe me? Good. Try it for yourself and see.

And for the other 40% of the time when you are asked, “What’s this call regarding?” or, “Have you spoken to him/her before?” or even if you don’t have the prospect’s name, you can find these and other answers in my new book, Power Phone Scripts.

See it here.

Stop struggling and start closing more sales!

First We Form Habits, Then They Form Us

“First we form habits, 

then they form us.”

–Bob Moawad, Edge Learning Institute

I just worked with a great inside sales team in Louisville, KY (hi Kathy, Darryl and the team!), and this week they begin working with a new, best practice approach that is going to make them much more successful. I’m excited for them! At the close of each day of training, I told them that the biggest challenge isn’t going to be learning the new scripted approach (although that will definitely take some effort), but rather it will be in unlearning their old habits.

Now don’t get me wrong, habits are a good thing and without them we couldn’t get much done. In fact, the great thing about forming a habit is that once you do, you can rely on it almost unconsciously and so devote your time and energy to other things. Just think about driving your car. Once you learn how, you no longer have to take the time to learn how to pull out into traffic, change lanes, or learn how to parallel park. You just get in and your habit of driving takes over!

When you come to think about it, our lives are made up of a series of habits: habits of eating and exercise, of communicating with other people, family members, etc., and hundreds of other routines of living (think about brushing your teeth – do you floss?). Just imagine how much more difficult life would be if you had to learn all these things over every day!

So habits are a wonderful thing – if they are good ones. Unfortunately, we also can develop bad habits. Once, when I was working onsite for a few months many years ago, I got in the habit of visiting the food truck at the 10:00 A.M. break. They had the most delicious French Fries with a tangy salt, and I developed the habit of having them every day. Well, after three months I had put on almost five pounds.

That’s when I remembered today’s quote. What I found was that the French Fries habit I had formed was suddenly forming me! And when you think about it, all habits work the same way. And this is especially true in sales. If we develop poor prospecting habits, then we create unqualified prospects and appointments. This leads to a low closing percentage. If we develop an aversion to asking for the order, then we tend to create a lot of call backs.

Because many sales teams have developed bad selling habits, the first thing they need to do is unlearn the bad habits before they can learn newer, better ones. Here are three tips for doing just that:

  • The first thing you want to do is make sure it is easy for you to adopt the new habit of a better approach. In the case of learning a new scripted sales approach, I always like to use the Adele example. How many of you know the words to the song, “Hello”? Lots of you, right? That’s because you’ve heard it a hundred times!

The best way to learn a new script is to record yourself practicing it into a recording device (all smart phones have one), and then commit to listening to your recording 30 to 40 times. If you do that, then using them will become an easier habit for you.

  • Record yourself. Because habits are mostly unconscious, we often don’t even know when we’re using them! By recording yourself, and then listening to your recordings daily, you will become aware of what you’re saying, and you’ll have the ability to change that.
  • Reward yourself when you use the new scripted approach. When you catch yourself using the new scripts, give yourself some positive reinforcement. Hit a “That was easy” Staples button (get one for your desk), or use positive affirmations to support yourself. I used to say to myself, “See, I knew I could do it. And watch this, I’m going to do it again!”

Just know that the good news is that once you displace an old habit with a more effective one, the new one will take on a life of its own as well. That’s why top sales producers remain top sales producers regardless of what company they work for or what product or service they are selling.

So commit to learning a better practice approach in your sales environment, and then commit to developing it into a habit. When you do, you’ll find that your new habit will soon be forming a more successful and productive you!

Current Prospecting Tips that Work

Do you hate prospecting by phone? “Who doesn’t?” is probably your answer. And who can blame you. First you have to deal with gatekeepers, receptionists, office managers, etc.

Then, if you do finally get through to someone, you get blow offs, resistance, and the old, “Just email me something, and I’ll look at it.” Yeah, right.

Imagine if I told you many of the ways you’re approaching your prospects are actually causing the objections you’re getting? Some of the wrong things to say are:

“Did I reach you at a good time?”

And

“I’m just calling to learn a little more about your company…”

Many sales reps think they are being polite when they use these kinds of openings, but in reality they’re just making it easy for prospects to blow them off.

Wouldn’t you like to know:

  • Better ways of opening your conversations?
  • Proven ways to deal with gatekeepers?
  • Word for word scripts to deal with common blow offs like “Just email me something?”

If you’ve read this far, then you’re in luck. By clicking the link below, you’ll get access to a 34 page sample of my new book, “Power Phone Scripts: 500 Questions, Phrases, and Word-For-Word Scripts to Help You Open and Close More Sales.”

And in this sample, you’ll get all the scripts and techniques to help you deal with the situations above. All for free.

Get your sample here.

And if you like what you read, why not get a copy of this powerful handbook for all your team members and yourself. Keep it near the phone to instantly improve your effectiveness on the phones. Increase your sales and build your confidence. All for $28!

Also, if you’d like a limited edition signed copy of the book, use this link to order.

Either way, invest in yourself, in your team and company, and start winning more sales, more easily.

Get yours today!

How to Handle the Objection, “We’re all set”

Let’s face it — prospecting by phone is hard.

It doesn’t matter if you’ve done your social media homework on LinkedIn and found a distant cousin in Utah, if you’re making, fill in the blank here (“unexpected calls”, “prospecting calls”, “discovery calls”, “cold calls”, etc.), you’re going to get resistance.

And if you want to be successful at overcoming it, then you’d better be prepared with solid, scripted responses to things like: “We’re not interested,” and “Just email me something,” and “We’re already taken care of,” etc.

I guarantee your job (and life) will go a lot better if you do.

In my new book, “Power Phone Scripts,” I list over 500 word-for-word responses to these and many other objections, stalls, and resistance statements you get day in and day out.

To give you a sample, here are 5 of 10 ways I list in the book on how to handle the “We’re all set for right now” objection. Variations of this include:

“We are O.K. with our present system”

OR

“We’ve already got a company that handles that”

OR

“We’re fine for right now”

So here’s how you handle the “We’re all set” blow off or/and any of its variations:

“We’re all set”

Response One:

“That’s great, and I’d just like to see if we could get on your vendor list for the next time you’re in the market.  Let me ask you…”

Now get into your qualifying questions…

Response Two:

“Most companies I speak with are ‘all set’ and that’s why I’m reaching out to you now – I want to give you an option for the next time you’re in need of this.  Let me ask you…”

Back to qualifying…

Response Three:

“No problem.  Let me ask you: the next time you’re in need of this, what’s number one on your wish list?”

Response Four:

“I understand – I didn’t expect to catch you in the market right now.  Instead, let me get an idea of your perfect profile, and then I’ll send you some information you can keep on file next time you need this…”

Now re-engage by asking a qualifying question.

Response Five:

“Got it.  Let me ask you: the next time you are in need of this, are you the right person to speak to about it?”

If yes, then qualify them for that next time – especially asking about timeframe, budget, etc.

As you can see, if you have any one of the proven responses at your disposal when prospecting, you’ll be much more effective at getting the next level with your prospect – instead of getting turned down.

And wouldn’t you want that?

If you liked what you just read and think responses like these would help you, or your team, get further with decision makers, then get over 500 more proven responses by ordering my new book: Power Phone Scripts.

Your Comfort Zone and Your Success

“Everything you want in the world is just right outside

your comfort zone. Everything you could possibly want!”

– Jennifer Aniston, actress

I once heard a joke that goes like this: “The only reason there are matinee movies in large metropolitan cities is for commission sales reps who have hit their comfort zone income early in the month.”

I remember my thoughts when I first heard this. I remember thinking that when I got near the production I needed to make my expenses for the month, I let my foot off the pedal. Once I knew I was covered, I just wanted to relax.

I remember how it was in the early part of my career, I was more interested in getting by than in succeeding. I didn’t have any goals, and I certainly didn’t see myself advancing in my career. Inside I was secretly hoping to go back to school and get my doctorate in psychology. I was just sort of hanging out in my job until the time was right.

What always interested me though, were the top producers. There were three people in my company who made considerably more money than me and it showed. They drove beautiful cars, and owned homes, and won all the bonuses. I had no idea how they did it, and it wasn’t until I heard about the concept of a comfort zone that I put it all together.

What I learned is that the only difference between my production and those of the top 20% was what we expected of ourselves, and how hard we were willing to work to get it. I learned that if I wanted to achieve more, in my job or even back in school, then I had to be willing to examine and step outside my comfort zone.

If I wanted more from my job, I had to get to work earlier, use a scripted, best practice approach, record myself daily, etc. That was the “try harder” part. But it also meant that I needed to expect more. I had to be willing to step outside of my comfort zone and think bigger.

This was the hardest part because it meant I needed to believe I could have and I could achieve more. It was hard to change my expectations and my beliefs, but I did it incrementally by setting small goals and achieving those first. It was then easier to raise my goals a little more. By doing this over time, I raised my comfort zone.

In my experience, everything and anything is possible if I’m willing to believe it is. I like to say that if anyone else has something or has done something, then I can do it, too. And so can you – as long as you are willing to get out of your comfort zone and put in the work.

How to Handle: “We’re happy with who we’re using…”

First of all, I’d like to thank all of you for making my new book release a HUGE success on Amazon! Power Phone Scripts is the #1 New Release in the Retail Industry! If you haven’t had a chance to get your copy, then simply click on the book link at the bottom of this email.

Today’s article contains some scripts right from Power Phone Scripts that teach you how to deal with an objection you probably get often: “We’ve already got a supplier for that.” Variations are things like:

“I’m happy with who were using”

OR

“We’ve been doing business with our current supplier for a long time…”

AND

“My (brother/relative/friend) handles that…”

While all these objections or stalls may seem insurmountable, they aren’t! All you have to do is be prepared for them with a proven script and rebuttal. And you’ll find those below. Let’s start with:

Objection: “I’ve been doing business with my current supplier for a long time…”

Rebuttal:

“How long has that been?”

Layering question:

“And has it been that long since you’ve compared prices and services with another provider?”

OR

“You know, a lot has changed in that time; it sounds like this would be a good time to at least get another opinion/quote of services just so you know that you’re not only still getting the best deal and service, but also so you’ll know who to reach out to should you need additional help.

“Could I at least do a no cost/no obligation comparison quote for you?”

If your prospect says yes, then there’s an opportunity here and you’ve uncovered it.

How to Handle, “My supplier is my friend/brother/long term relationship, etc.”

While this is, at first glance, a seemingly difficult objection to overcome – and sometimes, if it’s true, won’t be overcome right away – there are ways to position yourself to earn some of the business either now, or to be the preferred vendor they reach out to if they need to consider making a change.

The way to do this effectively is to be prepared with proven scripts. Let’s take it one at a time:

Objection: “My supplier is my friend.”

“I understand, I also do business with people I consider friends as well. Tell me, how long have you been doing business with him/her/them?”

Layering question:

“And who were you doing business with prior to them?”

Layer:

“And when was the last time you did a comparison with another provider?”

[If never or a long time]

“Well then, it’s a good idea to at least get another opinion/quote of services just so you know that you’re not only still getting the best deal and service, but also so you’ll know who to reach out to should you need additional help.

“Could I at least do a no cost/no obligation comparison quote for you?”

If your prospect says yes, then there’s an opportunity here and you’ve uncovered it.

If they say no, then simply use the “Next in Line Script” below:

“O.K., no problem. One last question: Could I be the next in line person you reach out to in case you ever need to get another quote or service comparison?”

[If yes – take all their information and then]:

“Just out of curiosity, what would have to happen for you to even consider reaching out to someone else?”

Objection: “My supplier is my brother/relative.”

As above, your first job is to question and explore this objection.

Use:

“Hey that’s great. As you know, doing business with relatives can have its upside and downside, how’s your experience been?”

[If great]

“That’s good to hear. Just out of curiosity, how long have you been doing business with them?”

Layer:

“And who did you use before that?”

Layer:

“And what did you like about doing business with a non-relative that you miss now?”

[Regardless of what they say, Layer]:

“Well then, it’s a good idea to at least get another opinion/quote of services just so you know that you’re not only getting the best deal and service, but also so you’ll know who to reach out to should you need additional help. Could I at least do a no cost/no obligation comparison quote for you?”

If your prospect says yes, then there’s an opportunity here and you’ve uncovered it.

If they say no, then simply use the “Next in Line Script” above.

As you can see, handling objections become easy if you take the time to script out a best practice response to them.

If you’d like to get over 500 additional scripts, phrases and questions to help you overcome the resistance, stalls, and objections you get when selling over the phone (or in person!), then Click Here to order a hand signed copy of my new book: Power Phone Scripts!

(Note: this offer for signed copies is limited. If you would like a copy, then order today to ensure availability)

How to Overcome the Top Three Objections in Sales

There is a secret that every top selling professional knows and leverages. It’s what enables them to consistently out perform all other struggling sales reps in their company and in their industry. And here is what it is:

80% of the selling situations, the stalls, the resistance, the objections you get into today, you’ll get into tomorrow, next month, and next year. What top producers do is make a list of these repeatable selling situations, they then script out, memorize, and internalize the best practice way of handling them, and that’s why they succeed more of the time than their competition.

Think about it: If you made a list of the objections you get when prospecting, wouldn’t it contain things like:

“We’re not interested.”

“We already have a supplier for that.”

“Just email me something.”

How about for closing:

“I’m going to need to think about it.”

“The price is too high.”

“I’m going to have to talk to (someone else).”

You can probably add a few more, but very soon your list would end. You’d have your top 80%.

Now ask yourself: How much more effective would you be if you could ace each one of those objections or blow offs? How much more confident would you be?

Here’s the good news: I’ve just published a new book – Power Phone Scripts – that has over 500 word-for-word scripts, questions, phrases, and conversation starters that will give you the best practice responses used by the top selling professionals in all industries. And you can get it here

In Power Phone Scripts, there are 10 new ways to handle the “I need to think about it” objection alone! Here is one from the book:

“I need to think about it”

“_________, obviously there is something that either doesn’t make sense to you, or you need to check on something, I’m not sure which.  But procrastinating on this won’t help make this decision easier for you.  Let me ask you: What proof do I need to give you right now that this will work for you, to help you make that decision?”

Here’s another excerpt from the Power Phone Scripts that gives you a proven response to “The price is too high.” (Note: You get 5 new responses to this objection if it’s B2B, and 6 responses if it’s B2C – 11 total!):

“The price is too high,” (B to C):

“I understand and let me ask you: if price were not an issue on this – in other words, if this were more in alignment with what you could pay – is this something you would move forward with today?”

And here is a script from the book that gives you a response to “I need to talk to….”. (Note: You get 6 new responses to this objection in Power Phone Scripts):

“I need to talk to…”

“I understand _________.  Tell you what I’d be happy to do:  I know you are behind this, right?”

[Must get buy-in here first]

“Well, it’s not fair to ask you to do my job, so if it’s all right with you, I’ll be happy to reach out to (decision maker) directly and answer any questions they might have – would that be O.K.?”

[If NO]

“No problem.  Just out of curiosity, do you think they will go with this?”

[If NO or Don’t Know]:

“What would it take for them to say yes?”

Imagine how much more successful and confident you would be if you had these proven responses ready when you got one of these stalls or objections?

And now ask yourself how much more successful you’ll be when you have over 500 more!

If you like what you’re hearing, then I’ve got good news for you: Power Phone Scripts: 500 Phrases, Questions, and word-for-word scripts to Open and Close More Sales is now available!

BONUS: Plus, when you buy today, you’ll get hundreds of dollars in bonuses from some of the top selling professionals in the industry today like: Jeffrey Gitomer, Jeb Blount, Wendy Weiss, Tom Hopkins, Mark Hunter and many more!

See the offer here

Make Power Phone Scripts, your #1 Summer Read – and then get ready to make more money in the third and fourth quarter than you ever had!

And if you’re a sales leader, then invest in a copy for each member of your team! It’s the sure way to show them you care about their career – and your company’s success!

Order bulk copies here

The Importance of Following Up

Let me ask you this: If you just met with a really hot prospect, how long would you wait before you followed up? A day? A couple of days? A week?

Here’s my experience with a couple of real estate agents a while ago:

My wife and I were selling our home and interviewed some real estate agents to represent us. I got a couple of referrals from some good friends in our neighborhood, reached out to them, and told them we wanted to meet.

I think I’d call that a hot lead, wouldn’t you?

So one night we met the first agents – a husband and wife team – who had been selling real estate in our neighborhood for years, and claimed to be the Number One agents in this area (it’s odd that the other two agents we met with also claimed to be the Number One agents as well, but that’s a discussion for another article).

We spent a couple of hours with this team, really like them, liked their recent experience and success on the next block over, and loved their strategy. We told them that we’d be meeting with another agent referral the next night but that we would get back with them the day after that.

O.K., so now comes the test: When would you, if you were them, get back with us?

The right answer is 9 A.M. the very next morning. If I were them, I would have sent a quick email saying it was so nice meeting my wife and me, that I really liked the house, and that I was confident I could sell our home using the strategy I had outlined. I’d say if there was anything I could do, just reach out to me, and that I look forward to speaking with them (me) very soon.

No brainer, right? Well, we got….nothing.

Okay. So the next night we had the other agents over – a team of two “Number One” selling agents in our area. We liked their pitch also, and we were impressed by how much they wanted to list our house for. In fact, when they left, we were leaning towards hiring them. We told them about the other couple we met, and told them we’d have an answer for them in the morning…

Now, how long do you think it took for them to follow up with us?

Believe it or not, they didn’t reach back out to us for over a week!

A week! I’m still stunned because, as we told them we’d have a definite answer by the very next morning. Did we get a follow up email? No. Did we get a follow up phone call? No. Here we are a HOT lead, and they didn’t even follow up?!

What’s wrong with these sales people?

In the meantime, the first couple emailed us the next day asking what happened with our other meeting and expressed their strong desire to work with us. When we told them about how the other team wanted to list our house for more money, they immediately cautioned against that and told us they wanted to meet with us again – that day even – to explain their strategy again. They redeemed themselves and ended up getting our business.

So here’s the lesson for all you sales reps and business owners out there – don’t wait days or weeks to follow up prospects! Especially the hot ones! A simple email that thanks them for their time, acknowledges how much you learned and how excited you are to help them will go A LONG WAY to earning you their business.  Especially since not many other sales reps have this kind of urgency.

If you need some follow up strategies that really work, along with some word for word emails and voicemails, then invest in my new book: Power Phone Scripts: 500 Phrases, Questions, and Word-for-Word Scripts to Open and Close More Sales.

BONUS: Get hundreds of dollars in bonuses from top sales experts like Jeffrey Gitomer, Jeb Blount, Mark Hunter and more when you order here

Whatever You’re Thinking, Think Bigger

Whatever You’re Thinking, Think Bigger.

–Tony Hsieh, entrepreneur

You’ve probably heard the expression that “Life is a self-fulfilling prophesy.” Nowhere is that more immediately apparent than in the world of commission sales. As you look around the company or industry you work in, I’ll bet it’s true that some reps, the top producers, are making two, three or even four times more than other reps selling the exact same product or service? Have you ever asked yourself why that is?

I sure did. My moment of clarity came one day when I grew sick and tired of being sick and tired. I had just lost a big sale, and suddenly I didn’t have spending money for the weekend. As I looked around at the top three producers, I saw their expensive suites, and I saw their nice cars in the parking lot. They were selling the same thing I was, but my results were totally different. I wondered what I was doing wrong.

At that moment, I made a commitment that day to do whatever I had to do to succeed. Within 90 days I went from one of the bottom producers to the top out of 25 reps. As soon as I was handed the biggest paycheck I had ever earned, I went back to my desk and wondered just what the limit on my income could be at that job. Looking at what others had been earning for over a year, I set a new goal of income for myself – a big one.

By the end of that year, I had reached that goal. As I lay on a lounge chair in Maui, Hi (a bonus from the company!), I set an even bigger goal for income in that next year. By the end of that year, I hit it again! The following year, I had bigger income goals, but I knew I needed more opportunity, so I left that company and became a vice president of sales with a new firm. I hit my goal again. Suddenly life became very open to me.

I have learned to be a big believer in visualization and affirmations, and over the years I have proved to myself that whatever I think is possible becomes possible. But I have also learned that it can become a limit. Rarely do I exceed my goals, rather, I achieve them. And that’s why I love today’s quote. I read something similar once that has become my new mantra:

“Imagine better than the best you know.”

What I love about this quote is that whenever I finish goal setting for the year or the quarter, or the month, I ask myself: what would happen if I imagined even better? What would be even more exciting and fulfilling? What would my life be like if I accomplished something more?

And once I go beyond what I think is possible, I look for evidence of someone else achieving it. I always find examples of people or organizations who have higher goals than I do, and this always inspires me to dream bigger.

I do believe life is a self-fulfilling prophesy, and this leads me to another quote I think often about: “Most people don’t set goals to high and miss, they set them too low and hit.”

So today, I constantly challenge myself to ask “what if?” This helps me raise the limits of what I think are possible, and this allows me to keep hitting bigger and better goals.

Now granted, there are other variables at play. One of the most important is, of course, skill and technique level. Top producers consistently practice better selling habits and better sales techniques. But you can learn and practice these, too. They tend to work harder, but, again, you can do that.

They put in the time, energy and money required to perfect their craft. But the good news for everyone else, is that these techniques and habits can be learned by anyone willing to put in the same time and effort.

Years ago, I heard a sales trainer say that the great thing about sales, especially commission sales, is that you are the boss. Think about it: the company you work for pays all the bills – they pay the phone, office space, pay the support staff, get the leads, etc. All you have to do is determine the amount of money you want to make. The great thing about sales is if you want to get a raise, then you can give yourself one – close more sales.

After I applied myself and mastered the craft of sales, in other words, put in the time to learn how to make a connection, build rapport, qualify leads, handle objections and stalls, etc., I realized that there was another component to sales: the mental part. What I realized is that what separated me from big dollar producers wasn’t my skill set any longer, but rather, what I expected of myself.

Someone once said that the world (and sales) is like a vast ocean: some people go to it with a teaspoon, others a cup, and others a dump truck. How much you take out of the ocean is determined by the container you take to it. It’s the same in sales. What’s the difference between someone making a million dollar a year in commissions and someone making $5,000 a year? Their expectation level.

Think about it: If you were to take a million dollar producer from one company and put him or her in another, how do you think they would do? First, they would make sure a million dollars in commissions was possible in that job or industry, and then they would generate it. But the same is true with the $5,000 producer. Put that person in the same job or industry, and they’ll average about $5,000 in commissions. I’m sure you’ve seen this happen…

What I’ve found to be true in sales – and in life – is that you get what you expect. And the true way to get more – sales, commissions, income – is to believe it’s possible, and then truly expect it.