Luck has been described as being in the right place at the right time. But, there’s a catch: you also have to know what you want. Otherwise, you might be in the right place at the right time…and never even know it!
Picture two runners on a racetrack…blindfolded. One of them turns to the other and says, “Hey, do you have any idea which way the finish line is?” The other says, “No, I have no idea. But what do you say we start running anyway?”
Do you want to run that kind of race?
Neither one of those runners is going to win any Olympic medals anytime soon. If one runner “beat” the other, how would either of them know? It’s an absurd situation, but it’s no more absurd than the way a lot of salespeople “race” through their daily routines.
If you were to ask one hundred salespeople at random to identify where they want to be one, two, or five years from today—what “finish lines” they hope to have crossed in terms of income, personal and professional growth, contribution to their company, or for that matter, any other meaningful area of life—what would you hear in response? Perhaps five out of those hundred people would be able to say, specifically, what it was that they wanted out of life within each of those timelines. From the remaining ninety-five people, you’d most likely get a blank stare or doubletalk.
Put those five people in the “right place,” at the “right time,” and, yes, great things can happen—because they know exactly what they want, can visualize that outcome, and are ready to take action on that outcome. Once they know what they want, they can take advantage of the circumstances, relationships, and “coincidences” that support their goals. You couldn’t even put the other ninety-five people in the “right place” at the “right time.” Why not? Because they don’t know what they want! There is no right place! There is no right time! There is no finish line!
“Luck” really is the intersection of preparation and opportunity. And the clearer you are about what you want in life, the luckier you will find yourself becoming.
"Worry" is Interest Paid in Advance on Borrowed Trouble
Have you ever worried about an upcoming sales call, a future presentation, or a pending decision from a prospective client? Have you ever worried about your performance at a previous meeting or presentation? Or, perhaps you’ve fretted over a comment expressed by a client or prospect. If so, you’re not alone. Salespeople often worry about past or future events.
A small amount of concern—emphasis on small—can be beneficial if it urges you to review your strategy and look for ways to improve. But, when worry begins to fill your day, it clouds your thinking and diverts your attention from current tasks and real issues to imagined scenarios, which rarely develop, or past events over which you no longer have control. It obscures your judgment and prevents logical, objective analysis. Worry is not a healthy emotion, and worrying is not a constructive activity.
Worrying about future events can be avoided with intelligent organization. Designate a specific amount of time for planning and preparation for future events. Then, schedule the time so it doesn’t interfere with other normal activities. Finally, and most importantly, give yourself permission to keep to the schedule…and then LET IT GO!
Worrying about past events can be avoided by accepting the possibility of a less than perfect outcome. Sometimes, your undertakings will be carried out flawlessly…exactly as planned, and you’ll achieve your desired result. That’s good. Other times, the outcomes won’t be so ideal. That’s not so good, but it is part of the human experience. ACCEPT IT!
No amount of worrying will change it. You can further minimize worry by thoughtfully planning your week and then prioritizing and organizing your daily activities. If today’s activities are well organized, you should be able to start tomorrow’s activities without worrying about what took place today. And, if tomorrow’s activities are thoughtfully planned, you should be able to complete today’s activities without worrying about what will happen tomorrow.
Poor Economy; Rich Rewards
While some sectors of the economy have been hit hard, it’s a good bet that most of the customers and prospective customers in your market are still buying. It’s just as good a bet that some, perhaps many, of your competitors with short-term growth strategies have pulled in the reins on their sales and marketing efforts.
What does that mean for you?
It means that it is time for you to expand your efforts. Maintaining a long-term perspective may be difficult, but the rewards are great. Traditionally, the companies that didn’t “pull in the reins” during economic downturns were the ones that ended up with a bigger market share when the economy recovered.
While your competitors are sitting in their offices, worrying about the state of the economy and losing market share, you can be out in the marketplace making contacts, developing new relationships, closing sales, and gaining market share.
The rewards won’t be automatic. You will have to be focused, organized, and diligent. And, you’ll need an effective process for identifying and qualifying opportunities. But, if you are willing to put in the effort…the rewards will materialize.