“You might get inspired by examples and the stories of plays other people have run, but it’s up to you to find your own way through.” – Scott Ingram in today’s Tip 603
How often do you get challenged in a sales process?
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Scott Ingram: You’re listening to the Daily Sales Tips podcast and I’m your host, Scott Ingram. I’ve been thinkin8g a lot about how important creativity is in sales lately. It was actually Eddie Baez who initially got me thinking about this. Almost a year ago I was in New York City for a couple of client onsite meetings, back in the day when that was a thing, when we traveled and got together for drinks. Anyway, Eddie is a consummate reader and a true student of sales. In fact, you can listen to our conversation together in episode 79 of the Sales Success Stories podcast. But as a fan of that show, he pointed out that many of the top performers I’ve interviewed are super creative. Think about it. How often do you get challenged in a sales process or have to find a different and unique way to break through with your prospecting because just doing more isn’t going to be enough to get you to where you want to be?
I had some great sales leaders early in my sales career who taught me that you’re going to hear “No” probably a few times as you’re working through an opportunity. They even suggested that a deal wasn’t really real until you’d heard No at least once. It’s those no’s that get you closer to what’s really going on. It’s your opportunity to go deeper, ask more questions, and get to the truth. Once you understand that, then you get to be creative. How do you overcome those issues and perceived obstacles? How do you re-engage the deal that’s gone dark? How do you differentiate yourself and your offering to outshine your competitors? It’s all about creativity. Sales is rarely mechanical, nor does it follow the same script and the same process every time. It’s more like Jazz. There’s a lot of improvisation and creativity, and it works best if you apply your own unique style and put a personal touch on things.
Lately, I’ve run into a whole heap of different challenges and issues, but each time I’ve been able to take a breathe. Think it through, get creative, collaborate with my team and ultimately come up with something that was even better because of the challenge. This is certainly true in a micro sense when it comes to a specific deal or a particular prospecting effort, but it’s also true in a very macro sense right now. Things are different. We’re still not traveling and going to see our customers face to face and getting them all together in a room together to share our vision or create that vision together.
So we have to be more broadly creative as well. What’s relevant now? What’s going to break through the noise and get people to act, to make a change, to transform? It all comes down to your creativity. You might get inspired by examples and the stories of plays other people have run, but it’s up to you to find your own way through.
But we don’t talk about this and think about this enough. We don’t take the time to think. I’m pretty sure that’s actually one of the books that Eddie pulled out of his bag as we had that drink together. He pulled out a rather tattered, well-read copy of Napoleon Hill’s Think & Grow Rich. It’s as simple as that. You have to take time to think. I’ll call on the title of another book that I haven’t actually read, but I think the title pretty much says it all and that’s Ryan Holiday’s The Obstacle is the Way.
You can’t run away and hide from the obstacles and the challenges. You’ve go to face them. You’ve got to think about them and then figure out if you’re going to just going to run straight at it, or maybe you can go around it or over it or under it, but as the subtitle of that book suggests: There’s an art in turning trials into triumph.
Appreciate the stress. Lean into the pressure and the things that are in your way. That’s where real growth comes from. If you want to grow stronger you don’t get there by lifting light weights. You get there from putting stress on the system, by breaking down your muscles so that they’ll repair, adapt, and grow. You don’t get faster by running slow. You’ve got to push yourself to go harder than you probably want to grow so that you get that training response you’re after.
I could go on, but I’ll leave you with this. I’ve been working on a presentation that I’ll be delivering on October 6th on the Sales Experts Channel called 5 Creative Prospecting Examples that Worked in the Real World. I think it’s shaping up to be the best, most entertaining presentation I’ve ever built. It’s all about inspiration and ideas so you can see what other people are doing, but it doesn’t have the answers. You have the answers. You have the creativity. You need to do the thinking and apply the creativity that’s going to help you come out on top.
Keep going, my friends!
I’m going to put links to my conversation with Eddie Baez, the books I mentioned, and a link to register for the creative prospecting webinar at DailySales.Tips/603
Once you’ve clicked over there and gotten registered for the webinar. Be sure to come back tomorrow for another great sales tip from David Weiss. Thanks for listening!