2009 is the 40th anniversary of Apollo and these famous words spoken by Astronaut Neil Armstrong, "One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind." This remarkable statement truly applies for sales professionals specific to their sales approach.
In selling, you need to take small steps, daily actions that move you closer to your sales targets and the organizations’ current vision and mission. These steps range from making telephone calls to following up on potential, new, current and past customers.
Small steps are also part of the sales process. Each step takes you closer to the earned commitment from the now potential qualified customer (a.k.a. prospect). When you fail to walk using the predetermined pathway, you probably will not be successful and there will not be any new dollars to stuff in your personal piggybank.
While advancing using a natural walking gait, sales people also need to be prepared to take those giant leaps. Risk taking is very much about making a giant leap. What that looks like may be as simple as making a cold call or introducing yourself to a complete stranger you have met at the airport or a restaurant.
Speaking at civic organizations is another example of making a giant leap since so many people fear public speaking. This fear is really false evidence appearing real. Do you actually believe anyone will take a shoe off and throw it at you or abruptly walk out muttering something derogatory under her or his breath? Speaking is a great way to begin to be noticed, share valuable information and showcase yourself as the Red Jacket in Sea of Gray Suits.
Another example of risk taking is talking with your competitors and seeing how you can work together. Not every business can be everything to their clients. By uniting with another professional who shares your high ethics and values, you have potentially doubled your sales force while bringing added value to new potential customers.
An effective sales approach includes both those small steps and those giant leaps. Invest some time to see if you need to make any course corrections or improve your sales skills in your ongoing quest to increase sales.