If you’re anything like me, some of your greatest ideas and plans come to you in the middle of the night.
On this specific instance, I woke up around 2am thinking about what makes some people better at selling than others. That lead down a rabbit hole and thirty minutes later, my mind wandered to how Saint Nicholas is the ultimate salesman.
Now I know this sounds like I was having some sort of hallucination but bear with me. You see, this epiphany came to me as I recalled a year-end conversation I had overheard while having lunch with a close friend who also happens to be in sales. This friend of mine was having a phone call with a prospect who he was looking to do business with. After exchanging pleasantries talking about the weather and holiday plans (things you should avoid when selling!) my friend said something to the tune of “we’re currently winding down business with Christmas around the corner. We’ll pick back up in the new year.” I almost fell out of my chair when I heard him say this. And unfortunately, this is typical with most people who think they’re selling. My friend basically threw away new business, or at the very least put it on hold, by using the holiday season as an excuse to coast through year end rather than going guns blazing and finishing the year strong.
Not only did he not win the prospect’s business, but he also set himself up to have a poor January. In order to be great at what you do, you can’t slow things down and expect to win in the long run. As my mentors used to tell me, “you can’t ease your way into a fight.” In the world of business, you’re either growing or you’re shrinking. You either always go for it, regardless of the season, or you just fit in with society and let the seasons and the weather and the circumstances dictate to you how things will go. Winding down is shrinking. There’s no two ways about it. When it comes to December and the holiday season, you need to be like Santa Claus. He’s getting ready to go full throttle even when the holidays are just around the corner.
What is synonymous with Santa Claus in December? He’s coming down the chimney! It doesn’t matter if it’s cold, snowy, he has millions of gifts to deliver, he gets work done. Santa doesn’t hold back because of the season. He makes it happen!
If you want to end your year like Santa does, try these strategies next time the holidays come around:
Get Even More Appointments
Remember that sales are not about products nor services. They’re about people. Getting people to meet with you when most are winding things down is a challenge but that doesn’t mean you should be deterred or give up. Go above and beyond to schedule time to see them. Sales is a numbers game. How many appointments you’re able to make determines how much money you’ll make.
Service Should Be Your Main Priority
One of the key traits to being great at selling is having the ability to give and then to give some more. Providing service, superior service, trumps selling. Commit to having a “can do” attitude with every customer you interact with. It’s normal for everyone to be stressed out during the holiday season. This is a perfect time for you to stand out and provide service to people when they least expect it. What is Santa’s demeanor like when the holidays come around? Have you ever seen him not smile? From what I’ve heard, old Saint Nick is constantly serving children all over the world, going above and beyond by squeezing down chimneys and getting the job done. Being able to serve people when no one else will is an excellent way to win more sales before the end of year.
Make People Start Believing in You
The great thing about Santa is that people (OK mostly children) believe in him. If you want people to believe in what it is you sell, you must believe in it first. How well you sell largely depends on the degree to which you’re sold. If you have confidence in what you’re selling, more people will follow your lead.
The bottom line is, don’t slow down just because others are doing so.
That will not help your situation at all. It doesn’t matter what time of year it is; customers need you. If you wind down now, you’ll be trying to pick things up again in the new year without any momentum trying to make up for almost a month’s worth of lost sales.
If you want to hear me talk about the art of selling, check me out at www.wolfmillstone.com and get in touch with me. I’m always happy to spread the message to others on how to crank it up when others are winding down.
Be something great. Do something great!