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Sales Focus: Activity Creates Mentality

Earlier this week John Woeppel, our VP of Terminal Services, sent a note reminding all of the sales people about planning activity for the week.  He referenced Cato the Elder, a Roman Senator and historian, in discussing how important it is to remain productive in our daily lives.  In order to be productive, one has to be prepared with a plan or find himself flittering about without any purpose.  Cato and John’s point was that we should constantly strive to find something worthwhile to do even if our original plan is foiled.  Having alternative actions (contingency plans) is paramount to remaining productive.

 

My focus today is to build on that email and discuss how productivity affects our mentality.  How often have you been stuck in a rut?  All of us have gone through periods where we just do not seem able to ‘motivate’ ourselves.  We struggle to make the first call of the day or just decide to blow off the plans to meet some customers for happy hour (OK, maybe that does not happen and if it does, you are really in a depressed state).  When we find ourselves in low places at work or at home, it becomes extremely difficult to start working in the right direction. 

 

Studies have long shown that there is a connection between our brains interpret the world and how our body reacts.  Psychoneuroimmunology has shown over and over again that depression weakens the immune system while feelings of happiness can boost the body’s resistance to illness.  What is amazing is that the brain also reacts to physical stimulus.  When a person smiles it can have the positive affect of tricking the brain into thinking a person is happy or joyous.  This action actually begins the process of making a person happier and reducing their stress and heart rate. 

 

The same type of reaction happens to us when we are being productive.  The old saying that success breeds more success is absolutely true in terms of how we orient our routines and actions we take daily.  If we begin to plan our work, work our plan and find success from the endeavors, that experience begins to provide the positive feelings needed to sustain prolonged periods of productivity.  It also begins to shape our attitude which is transmitted to those around us.  When we feel confident and self-assured based upon our own actions it is reflected in the way people will react to us.

 

When someone is said to have ‘presence’ we are acknowledging that there is some reaction to them that is not quantifiable, but is readily apparent.  People with presence are generally self-assured without being arrogant and cocky.  How can we capture that same sense of confidence so that it excludes forth?  It is through being productive.  When we are working hard and finding success, even in small areas, that success builds upon itself.  As a sales person, when in a slump, we find that small wins begin to build upon themselves until we are closing sales on a regular basis because our mindset has been changed by the productivity we are experiencing. 

 

Just like an athlete that is ‘in the zone’, so can each person find the zone at work.  It is a combination of belief and action that is the result of proper planning, effort and execution.  If you start to find yourself in a low state of productivity or find yourself just not feeling productive start finding small wins in your day.  It may be that you set a new goal of making 5 calls today instead of 4.  It may be that you are going to plan on following up by phone with 10 customers each day that have not shipped with us in the last month.  As you start to create these small goals and you fulfill them, two outcomes will occur…the first is that you will begin to feel a sense of accomplishment that will push your sense of worth higher creating the mindset of success required to continue to improve.  The positive actions will create a better mindset.  The second outcome, which is even more pressing to your success is that your attempts to change your mentality through creating achievable goals will actually also lead you to creating new sales opportunities and converting them to successful outcomes.  10 extra calls WILL create more sales.  More sales will create a better mindset.  Your mindset will create more success.  It is a circle that feeds upon itself.  Just remember, YOU can change both your mindset and your results through your actions.  Be not only active, but productive!

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As the company has grown, it has expanded its offerings to include dedicated equipment, freight management services, intermodal, flat, van, reefer, and specialized services. WJW brings the flexibility and dedication of a small company combined with the expertise and capability of a large one.
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