Goals are important. They mark off milestones, your progress on your journey. But disciplines and rituals are more powerful than goals.
Your rituals are the behaviors that you commit to and take that have no end. It is their consistency and their endlessness that make your rituals the powerful driving force of your life and your results.
Your sales practice has it’s own rituals. The rituals you hold sacred are what lead to your overall success and, ultimately, to you reaching your goals.
Making Prospecting Rituals Sacred
I know salespeople who get up in the morning and workout with a devotion that borders on religious. They hold that ritual sacred. But then they arrive at work and struggle to find the discipline to keep rituals that are equally important to their success and well-being.
Like scripts, even if you don’t believe you have rituals, you do. If you sit down at your computer and open your email before you make your prospecting calls, that is a ritual (albeit a terribly unhealthy ritual).
If you research each prospective client prior to making a call, and then you hang up the phone and begin researching the next prospect, you have another ritual (another unhealthy ritual).
If you don’t eliminate all distractions before you sit down to make your calls, you are admitting that your prospecting isn’t important. It’s means that you welcome interruptions and distractions.
Making your prospecting rituals sacred means you protect that time and devote your full attention and focus to that task. It might look something like this:
- Turn off the computer.
- Put all phones on do not disturb.
- Hang up “Do Not Disturb Sign.”
- Reaffirm your personal commitment to create value on every call.
- Place your call list, your calendar, and a notebook in front of you.
- Make 30 outbound calls without ever setting the phone back on the receiver.
What would a religious devotion to this sacred ritual (or one like it) do for your sales results if you kept it daily?
Making Sales Calls Rituals Sacred
After working in sales for years, it is incredibly easy to fall into a set of unhealthy rituals. Remember when you used to plan your sales calls? Remember when you used to do a little research before the sales calls? Remember when you used to rehearse for big, important, must win sales calls?
There aren’t many things that have a greater outcome on your winning an opportunity than the face-to-face sales meetings you have with your dream client. Why on earth would you wing it?
There may be a sacred first sales call ritual that would greatly improve your outcomes. It might look something like this:
- Review all notes from prior calls and phone calls.
- Revisit the company website and print important information.
- Review the company profile on LinkedIn.
- Review your contacts profile on LinkedIn and other Social Media sites
- Gather background from shared contacts.
- Complete your sales call planner and verify outcomes against your sales process.
- Make a list of questions you need answered.
- Reaffirm your commitment and plan to create value on every call.
I could write for hours just on sales call rituals, starting with making sure your shoes are polished (seriously!). Your rituals may vary tremendously. Like a lot of what we discuss here, from time to time you need to stop and thoughtfully reflect on what you do, why you do it, and whether or not it produces the results that you need.
Take the time to determine what rituals you need to keep sacred. What are the component parts of those sacred rituals? Write them down and commit to them. These disciplines will do a lot more to help you produce results than will goals alone.
What are differences between rituals and goals?
Why are rituals important?
What does it mean to hold something sacred?
What rituals do you keep sacred?
What rituals do you have that are seriously unhealthy and that need to be changed to something more beneficial?