Believe in you, and they will too
How committed must you be to your product or service, in order to succeed in sales? If you do not believe in it more passionately than anybody else, you should find a new profession.
I once read the story of an ancient General who traveled across a sea in order to conquer another nation. Upon landing and unloading their weapons, he ordered his men to set all the ships on fire. As the troops stood on the shore watching their only way to return to their homeland destroyed, they realized that the battle that loomed before them must be won. Retreat was not an available option.
Despite the fact that they were outnumbered, they won the battle because of their complete commitment to victory with no alternative for defeat. We can achieve unbelievable results if we find ourselves in a similar position.
Total commitment like this is the best assurance that you will “close the sale”.
I started my professional sales career after five years of restaurant ownership. I was married with three small children and had recently liquidated my restaurant business in a bankruptcy. Searching for a new career path, I connected with an old friend, the VP of Sales and Marketing for a company based in San Francisco, California. We lived in southeastern Idaho at that time.
I ask his advice because I had decided to pursue a sales career. His company provided products to the restaurant industry which I was familiar with but, I had little sales experience.
My friend arranged for a job interview with the company President who was currently scheduled to fly to Seattle and interview about 20-30 applicants for a single position available. Because of my relationship with the VP, the President agreed to modify his travel plans and fly back via Idaho to interview me. This was to take place the following week.
I knew my lack of sales experience would probably eliminate me compared to more qualified applicants. I arranged to go to San Francisco and meet him prior to his departure to Seattle. After gathering all the money we had and loading the kids in the car, my wife and I drove straight-through to San Francisco. We only had enough gas money for a “one-way trip”. Retreat was not an available option.
At the end of the interview, he said he would decide after his trip to Seattle. I boldly declared that I was not only the best candidate for the position, but that he could save the money for the Seattle trip by giving me an advance on my salary which I needed for gas to get back home and move my family to Seattle and start selling for him immediately.
He was so impressed with my full commitment to land this job that he hired me and I closed a very import sale because I believed in me enough that he did too.
You must believe in your own ability with total commitment enough to risk it all and “burn the ships behind you”. If you do so, you will succeed, especially in sales.