“Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm” according to Sir Winston Churchill, a masterful statesman. He might as well have been a masterful salesman considering how he convinced supporters and skeptics to accept his solutions for a sustainable Great Britain during World War II! Tenacity, persistence, execution are all sales characteristics that Churchill brought to his national stage. He engaged every interaction with friends and foes alike as if it were his last. Considering the high stakes of international politics, and a world at war, each interaction may have been his last. Not to equate every sales interaction with the future of the free world, the fact remains that his mindset led to his success. Sell like your future depends on it!
Every prospect and pitch are not greeted with resounding success. Failure is a heavy burden that all sales professionals must bear. For professionals who dislike the word “fail”, options abound. Don’t fail. Iterate. Create a vocabulary and habit of constant innovation and trial. Approach every prospect with the expectation of success. Bring your best market intelligence and sales pitch. Question insightfully. Then, adjust your reasoning, until a resolution is reached.
When using a strategy of iteration, the process is critical to success. Bring as many tools and tactics to each engagement as possible to ensure success. One pitch should feature several fact gathering questions to reveal prospects’ critical issues. The next interaction should feature sharing market intelligence to reinforce expertise that helps solve targets’ burning issues. To further move prospects closer to a relationship, share endorsements from other satisfied clients. Such level of detail requires preparation and persistence. But, what successful campaign does not?
Going from failure to failure is indistinguishable from try, try, again. Success is a process. Business development clearly embraces that process, otherwise it would be called business done! Each step, technique, and connection serves the goal of moving closer to generating revenue. Upon encountering resistance or even denial, learn the challenge’s lesson and deploy the increased knowledge toward the next opportunity. Recognize this tactic as advancement toward the desired goal. That goal is business development results.
No statesman wins every debate. No sales professional closes every deal. In all cases, success happens by winning the ones that count! Advance relies on the unyielding desire to win. Setbacks are part of the process. Take resources, relationships, and lessons from each engagement; apply them toward the next success. Advance toward the next and subsequent victories! Successful sales and future growth directly result from building professional skills and knowledge so that solutions and client satisfaction continually improves. Use every interaction as an improvement opportunity that leads to advancement, and then goal achievement.
Trust strategies that emphasize abandoning unsuccessful processes and evolving successful ones. Simultaneously, maintain salvageable intelligence and techniques to be applied toward future success. Iteration proves that successful opportunities remain ahead. Advancement means continuing to progress toward ultimate success. Neither iteration, nor advancement are ultimate goals. Revenue generation is the ultimate goal! Results are the fuel that keeps the statesman and the sales professional going. New threats present new opportunities. Solving those conflicts, winning those skirmishes, achieving results repeatedly sustains successful efforts. Business results demonstrate earned victories. Keep your enthusiasm for results!
By Glenn W Hunter
Managing Director for Hunter And Beyond, LLC