How to Guarantee You’ll Never Meet Your Quota

Beat your quotaLet me show you how to guarantee you’ll never meet your quota. It’s really easy. When you organize yourself to just meet it, you’re not very likely to achieve it. By operating that way you’re setting yourself up to generate less revenue for your company and fewer dollars for yourself. It’s actually why so many people never meet quota. All they do is set their sights on meeting it.

How’s that again?

What I’m saying is this: If all you try to do is meet the quota, you’ll never do it.

Why not?

Because you’ll organize your activity to hit the mark—which means barely meeting it–usually on the last day of the month. In the normal course of business, something will almost always go wrong with part of your plan, resulting in at least a small shortfall. Don’t be the salesperson who ends the month saying, “Had it in the bag. Then Jasper Jones fell apart on me. If it wasn’t for that, I’d have hit the mark.” That’s what happens when you aim to be average. In order to meet your quota every month, quarter, or year, you need a different strategy.

Begin by organizing your activity so you can double your quota. What will it take to make that happen? It’s easy to figure out. Just do the math. You must know what it takes to hit the mark. Double it to picture what has to happen to go beyond. Then, plan your activity as if this doubled amount is your actual quota. This way, when Sara asks for different terms, Kyle cancels an order, and your big client committee delays a decision, you’ll still do well with the other sales you’ve closed. When you do start hitting 200% of quota because of your increased activity, bump your goal to 300%. It can and has been done by students of my training. They implemented different strategies. They detailed out their activity plans. Those past graduates of my training followed through…and doubled and tripled their incomes.

Don’t meet any quota that’s set for ordinary people. Change your mindset and demolish it!

Copyright Tom Hopkins International, Inc.

Excerpted from my book, The Official Guide to Success.

The Accountable Person’s Bill of 39 Rights

This accountable person’s Bill of 39 Rights is a guest blog post by John G. Miller of QBQ, Inc. I highly recommend reading it, and perhaps, taking it to heart.

  1. I reserve the right to choose my words carefully, taking responsibility for each of them.
  2. I reserve the right to worry less about how others live and more about how I live my life.
  3. I reserve the right to share my opinions without fear my character will be attacked.
  4. I reserve the right to not call people names when they disagree with me.
  5. I reserve the right to not be easily offended.
  6. I reserve the right to not live a life of griping and grievances.
  7. I reserve the right to not rejoice when others stumble.
  8. I reserve the right to remember that my actions always speak louder than my words.
  9. I reserve the right to not hide behind the Internet to lash out at people.
  10. I reserve the right to not start or engage in purposeless arguments on Facebook.
  11. I reserve the right to disagree.
  12. I reserve the right to not scream and yell at those who disagree with me.
  13. I reserve the right to use social media in a positive, uplifting manner.
  14. I reserve the right to say “I don’t know” when I don’t know.
  15. I reserve the right to admit when I am wrong.
  16. I reserve the right to work for all I have and not become entitled.
  17. I reserve the right to change the one person that I can—me.
  18. I reserve the right to not speak of things I know nothing about.
  19. I reserve the right to dismiss Hollywood stars who have decided they’re experts in all matters.
  20. I reserve the right to not put any celebrity—including politicians—on pedestals.
  21. I reserve the right to treat all human beings with respect.
  22. I reserve the right to honor my country by honoring its laws as written.
  23. I reserve the right to believe the U.S.A is the greatest nation on Earth.
  24. I reserve the right to vote for politicians based on their competence, experience, and principles—and no other factors.
  25. I reserve the right to not form an opinion until all facts are known.
  26. I reserve the right to makes decisions based on my values, not expediency.
  27. I reserve the right to be more concerned about my integrity than another’s.
  28. I reserve the right to share my blessings with the needy and not judge those who don’t.
  29. I reserve the right to turn off television shows that are counter to my family’s values.
  30. I reserve the right to ignore all talking heads on all television networks.
  31. I reserve the right to tune out any journalist who goes beyond reporting the news.
  32. I reserve the right to object to teachers using my kid’s classroom to share their politics. (Note to 1st – 12th grade teachers: Please stick to teaching reading, writing, and ‘rithmetic!)
  33. I reserve the right to not get caught up in fads, including the latest “diet” plan.
  34. I reserve the right to think before I speak.
  35. I reserve the right to resist marketer’s pitches for shiny new things and spend less than I earn.
  36. I reserve the right to engage in strong, confident, and loving parenting.
  37. I reserve the right to break from group thinking and reason for myself.
  38. I reserve the right to own my decisions and not blame the lousy ones on someone else.
  39. I reserve the right to take personal accountability for my life and make NO EXCUSES!

[Read more…]

The Foundation of a Financial Services Career

AA018406The foundation of your financial services career includes your attitude, enthusiasm and goals. You see, you can have all the product knowledge in the world and excellent people skills, but if your attitude is sour and you’re not enthusiastic about what you’re doing and where you’re going, you might as well not bother getting out of bed in the morning. Your lack of enthusiasm will show. Worse, it’s contagious. If you’re not upbeat and excited about what you do for people, they won’t be either. If you don’t engage their emotions, they won’t do business with you. [Read more…]

Who are you helping? Them? Or yourself?

Before each client contact, ask yourself this: Who are you helping? Them? Or yourself? This means giving yourself a quick attitude check. Are you concerned about your production this month? Or, are you more concerned with whether or not you have the right solution for the client?

LS002546When you present an attitude of helpfulness at the beginning of every client contact, you’ll become a top closer in sales. By approaching selling situations with the goal of helping the client, you won’t come across aggressively—and by no means will you be average or typical. And, with a helpful attitude, you’ll knock the dollar signs out of your eyes, which will put the buyer at ease.

I teach my seminar attendees that a salesperson’s income is a scoreboard reflection of the amount of service he or she gives to others. If you’re not happy with your current score (aka income), it’s time to improve the level of service you’re currently providing.

Improving your service begins with taking on an attitude of servitude. It also means taking control of your personal environment. If something that’s going on in your personal life is distracting you from your job, it may show to potential clients. When they feel you’re distracted, they’ll want to extract themselves from working with you.

Don’t risk losing sales or long-term clients because non-career challenges you are facing distract you from providing the service you know you need to deliver. Do whatever it takes to give your clients all that they expect and deserve. They’ll reward you with their business…and referred leads.

Copyright Tom Hopkins International, Inc.

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Hearing No is Part of Getting to Yes

Champion sales people understand that hearing no is part of getting to yes. Average sales people let every nuance of the word no strike them like arrows and deflate the rest of their sales presentations. Think about how the following comments by potential clients make you feel:

056BZC01“Well, Jim, that new equipment you showed me sure is nice, but unfortunately I’m just going to have to say, ‘no.’”

“We appreciate all the information you’ve shared with us, Mary, but we’re not going to do this right now.”

Those are typical words and phrases sales people hear all day long, every selling day. For average sales people those words signal defeat. The gut reaction experienced when hearing them is an immediate one—of failure and rejection—something sales people go through on a regular basis.

In fact, since rejections are so common, it’s a wonder that so few sales people anticipate hearing them and prepare to deflect the negative feelings they can create. Most sales people just accept those words and the feelings they generate as part of the game of selling.

How often you hear the words and phrases like those above will depend on your abilities and skills as a sales person. But what you do and say after hearing them will make a world of difference in your closing ratio and in your personal bottom line.

Getting to “Yes”

This post is about “yes.” But the starting point is “no.”

The truth of the matter in selling is that very few buyers will say “yes” the first time they’re asked to own a product or service. Yet, the irony is that most sales people are willing to give up and accept rejection after hearing that first “no.”

Think about how you would feel if you heard the words at the beginning of this post.

  • Would you feel the physical effect of disappointment? It’s that sinking, let down feeling. It can be a tired feeling as your formerly pumped-up selling emotions trickle down the drain.
  • Would you mentally stop closing and simply move into “Let’s keep in touch”mode where you decide what to leave behind, what to pack away, and about moving on to your next meeting?
  • Would you say, “That’s okay.” “I understand.” Or, “I’ll touch back just in case you change your mind?”

That’s how average sales people respond. So my question to you today is this: Do you want to be average – or do you want to encourage yourself to become better than that?

There’s a whole lotta selling to be done after you hear the word no. It’s just a matter of understanding the many meanings of the word no, selecting the one this particular client means, and working with it.

When you understand that “no” doesn’t always mean “no sale,” those words will roll off your back like a duck sheds water and you’ll keep paddling forward in the sales process.

Copyright Tom Hopkins International, Inc.

Sales Job Frustration

Sales FrustrationWhen was the last time you experienced sales frustration? Was it last week? Yesterday? Five minutes ago…and that’s why you’re reading this now?

Most of us, when we experience frustration, start asking questions with great anguish in our voices such as, “Why is this happening?,” “How did that happen?” or, for the drama queen in each of us, “Is the world against me?” Being a huge proponent of asking questions in order to get anywhere in life or in business, I’ll commend you when you work to resolve your frustration by asking open questions.

Remember open questions? They start with Who, What, When, Where, Why and How. The trick to recovering from your frustration is in listening to the answers that come to you.

When you ask closed questions, those that can be answered “yes” or “no,” you’re not allowing yourself much room to grow or to move forward–away from the frustration.

Examples: “Why is this happening?” Maybe you left the house late for your meeting and encountered a traffic jam. Perhaps you didn’t do enough research on a client’s needs and the sale went to the competition. When you really listen to the answers to your why questions you’ll learn how to prevent the same frustration in the future.

Example: “Is the whole world against me?” The answer to this is fairly black and white. It’s either yes or no. If you believe the world is against you, go back to the open questions and find out why so you can do something about it. If the world isn’t operating against you, then maybe just a couple of people are or maybe you’re working against yourself. Go back to those open questions.

What you’re doing when you use open questions to find new solutions is selling yourself on your ability to think, change, plan, practice and grow.

What it boils down do is that we get frustrated when things don’t turn out the way we expect. In order to avoid the same frustration in the future, we need to change the way we approach similar situations in the future.

Copyright Tom Hopkins International, Inc.

Sales Motivation – Creating Your Ideal Life

Stop Thinking “If Only”

What’s holding you back from the success of your dreams? Do you ever catch yourself thinking or saying the following?

“If only I could get a better break.”

“If only I had more money.”

“If only I would’ve married the right person.”

“If only I worked for the right company.”

“If only I had the right parents.”

Those statements demonstrate a lack of personal accountability. Do you pull back from taking full personal responsibility? Many of us do. We think that a parent, a teacher, a friend, a boss, a spouse, the company we worked for, or some governmental program should shoulder our burden for turning our lives into what we want them to be. This approach can’t get the job done. [Read more…]

Be Proud to Be a Salesperson by Robert Terson

A few months ago Nicki and I went looking at exercise equipment. I was experiencing sciatica in my left leg (I didn’t know it at the time, but it was caused by a synovial cyst pressing on the nerve between L4 and L5; after an MRI revealed the problem, microsurgery provided the cure), was getting physical therapy treatments at the hospital, and needed to purchase an item for my home exercises. We went to a number of places, including two sports-equipment stores, finally found what I needed at a top-of-the-line exercise-equipment store on Golf Road in Schaumburg.

Author of Selling Fearlessly

Author of Selling Fearlessly

There was only one salesperson in the store—a tall, lanky young man in his mid-30s. It took only a few minutes for me to realize I was in the presence of a real pro; I thought he was a terrific salesperson for the following reasons:

1. He was incredibly knowledgeable about every product in the store; the man knew his stuff.  He answered every question like the late Ted Williams talking about the fine points of hitting a baseball; it was impressive.

2. He asked a number of excellent questions directly related to my condition; he wasn’t about to proceed without getting the information he needed to do his job properly.

3. When I asked about a $2,000 piece of equipment (a similar piece of equipment I was using during my sessions at the hospital), he smiled, extolled its virtues, and then told me a $15.00 exercise rope would do the job for me for a heck of a lot less money. He wasn’t interested in selling me something he didn’t think was in my best interest. He was far more interested in establishing a long-term relationship with us than making a specific high-dollar-amount sale. [Read more…]

Why Some Do and Some Don’t Succeed in Sales

Succeeding in SalesFor years a question has bothered me. Coming from failure to a degree of financial success and then becoming a trainer, I have seen and personally experienced a wide range of conditions. I have been very low on money, achievement, and self-image, and have changed all that for the self-image and actual substance of success. What constantly impresses me is how little difference there is between successful and unsuccessful people in intelligence and, very often in how hard they work. Being a failure, or getting by only through long hours of labor is not easier than being a roaring success – in fact, it’s whole lot harder.

The question that has troubled me from the beginning of my training career until recently is this: What is the essential difference between the all-around successes and the people who are all-around failures? [Read more…]

In It to Win It Amazon Best Seller

in it to win itI recently joined a select group of fellow business experts to co-author the book,
In It To Win It: The World’s Leading Experts Reveal Their Top Strategies for Winning in Business and in Life! The book was released by CelebrityPress™ – a leading business book publisher.

In It To Win It: The World’s Leading Experts Reveal Their Top Strategies for Winning in Business and in Life! was released on Thursday, August 2nd, 2012 and features entrepreneurs and professionals from around the world revealing their top secrets on an array of subjects ranging from health, wealth and marketing, to business success.  Some of the topics covered in the book include meeting client expectations, luxury home marketing, growing your virtual business, keys to highly successful marketing leaders, thinking like an owner, re-engineering your sales force, the psychology of sales and creating loyalty, among others.

On the day of release, In It To Win It reached best-seller status in four categories – reaching #2 in the Direct Marketing category.  The book also reached best-seller status in the Small Business & Entrepreneurship, Marketing, and Entrepreneurship categories.

After such a successful release, I was fortunate to be recognized by The National Academy of Best-Selling Authors™, an organization that honors authors from many of the leading independent best-seller lists.

Order Your Copy of In It to Win It