“Be in your personal development program every single day.” – Bill Sciacca in today’s Tip 701
How do you improve personal development and your own personal suit of armor?
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Scott Ingram: You’re listening to the Daily Sales Tips podcast and I’m your host, Scott Ingram. Today’s tip comes from Bill Sciacca. Bill is the author of 5 books on goal setting and leadership and has been teaching sales at the university level for 40 years and in executive education formats for 30 years. Here he is:
Bill Sciacca: Hello! I’d like to talk to you today about personal development and your own personal suit of armor. Now, let me unpack a couple of concepts here. The first concept I’d like to unpack is the suit of armor. I’m sure all of you remember from history class, the notion of how Knights would wear suits of armor while they were on their horse, carrying their lands. Now, obviously, the reason behind a suit of armor is, is pretty well known it’s so that their opponent’s lance couldn’t pierce their skin and basically hit a vital organ and killed them. So consequently, a suit of armor prevented that it gave the ability to deflect the opponent’s lance or to sometimes just break it.
Now, suits of armor had different gauges to them, and the test of the thickness of the gauge of the suit of armor that a particular knight war had to do with the knight’s physical stance. In other words, as Knights became stronger, they had the ability to done greater suits of armor with greater gauges, thus giving them even more protection, but you couldn’t put a very, very heavy suit of armor on a younger, less experienced Knight because the weight of that suit of armor would basically collapse them even before their enemies lance did.
So it was something that you had to build into. Well, salespeople, listen closely. You realize every day you are jousting. Now I don’t mean to make this sound adversarial, but let’s face it. If you are in a heavy prospecting role, that means that you are out every day talking to nine people that don’t need your product in the hopes of finding that one that does. If you remember the term prospecting, it comes from the gold rush. It means having to move a ton of dirt before you find a nugget of gold.
And if you’re in that prospecting mode, you realize that you’re going to hear a heck of a lot of no’s before you get that yes. Even if you are not in a heavy prospecting mode, just by virtue of having to get out there every day and make your presentations, you’re going to hear more no’s than yes’s. And the end result of that is that you can sometimes begin to feel down. How do we prevent that? By putting on our suit of armor every morning. Now our suit of armor is what allows us to be able to take those lances And not have them affect us. Now, as a salesperson, we should be looking for ways to increase the gage of our suit of armor. It’s an extremely important thing. And the best thing that we can do is to create a personal development program for ourselves.
You know, over the years this has changed. 20 years ago, developing a personal development program was difficult. It meant you had to go to companies and order cassette programs and buy books at bookstores because there was no online way of doing that. Well, now it’s so much easier. For example, if you have trouble listening, if you go to YouTube and just type in the word listening, you’ll probably get 10,000 various videos on listening. If your problem is developing the courage to prospect, if you go to any number of sites like Udemy, you will find courses that will assist you just in that. The point is this. When you have identified something that you need to change in your particular sales repertoire, the resources that are out there now are so plentiful, your challenge is not going to be finding the resources. Your challenge is going to be sorting through them to find the correct one, but that’s a personal development program.
Now, ladies and gentlemen, my suggestion to you is that you should be in your personal development program every single day. Every morning, when you wake up, you should spend at least 15 minutes, maybe half an hour going through something in terms of what your particular areas of development are. And by doing that, what you’re going to find is that the gauge of your suit of armor is going to increase. You are going to be faced with a question or an objection from a prospect that you are able to answer simply, whereas when that same question or objection was given to you three or four months before starting the personal development program, you may have stumbled and fallen. Now you’re able to do it, why? Because the gauge of your suit of armor is thicker.
That is one of the best things that we can do for ourselves as salespeople get into a personal development program. And it’s not just the mental program, either ladies and gentlemen, it could also be a physical one. It could be an emotional program that we need to get into. Maybe by two or three o’clock, we start to peter out. We don’t have as much energy. Well, then what we might need to do is find some type of personal development program to get on the treadmill, to start eating better. Maybe it’s the emotional content of the rest of our day that we made need to work on.
Whatever it happens to be, I can’t answer that only you can, if you were I, and I were in a coaching situation, I could help you through the particulars. But the fact of the matter is that at this point, you have to look at yourself and the reflection in the psychological mirror that you call you, and you need to decide what it is that I need to grow so that my suit of armor can increase its gauge.
Once you’ve determined that find the resources and begin to use them. Ladies and gentlemen, I have been doing this for 30 years. Well, before the internet was out there and I saw what it did to salespeople to transform their lives. It is even easier today. It is easier, but we need to be able to have the self-discipline and the determination to look at what we need to change. And then the courage to change it. If you do that, what you will find is your confidence soaring, what you will find is your income story and as a result of that. I wish you all the best.
Scott Ingram: You’ll find a bunch of great links to connect with Bill and a couple of his books and a Udemy course at DailySales.Tips/701
Once you’ve checked that out, be sure to come back tomorrow for another great sales tip. Thanks for listening!