Are you R.I.P. (Retired In Place)?

Almost every time I start a new client engagement to help improve a sales team I encounter one, or more salespeople that are R.I.P.  These are above average sales pros that usually have been around longer than other team members.  They are typically nice people.  They maintain a nice book of business. They sell about the same amount year after year.  Their customers love them.  The people around the office love them.  But just try to get them to sell more, or develop some new business and you would think you had asked them for their eldest child.

This speaks to complacency.  Sooner or later it strikes all of us.  We get comfortable. We adjust our life style to meet our income level.  Rather than selling more, we adjust downward.  How bad is that?  It usually happens with approaching retirement, but not unheard of in younger salespeople.  It begins with postponing things you dislike doing like prospecting.  Then it spreads to the other areas of your work.  You fail to write reports.  You fail to follow up on leads given you. You sort of run out of gas to do anything productive. STOP!

You MUST resist the feeling of “I don’t have to sell any more”.  I’m comfortable.  Let the others find new business.  I’ve earned it.  I am going to avoid making any new calls on people I don’t know.

To overcome this complacency; stay engaged.  Don’t settle for mediocre.  Try this; look for ways to share your expertise; become a mentor to a new salesperson.  Offer to make some joint sales calls.  How about doing some volunteer work with your trade association’s local chapter? Become an officer of the group.  Volunteer for one of your customer’s charity events.  Anyone can do nothing.  It takes someone special to do SOMETHING.

Sales quote: “I found it easier to get rich than to make excuses.”

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